Mayor Bloomberg spent a fun-filled afternoon with Newt Gingrich, Al Sharpton and President Obama discussing education policy. Education Secretary Arne Duncan was also present. Afterwards the visitors mostly yakked bipartisan gobbledegook to reporters, though Sharpton told the Daily News that the peculiar combo “agreed to work collaboratively with a ‘larger body’” on education issues in the future, but didn’t say what that body would be — Nickelodeon, perhaps.
Bloomberg gave Obama a nice friendship gift on this occasion: a pass on that low-flying plane incident that so incensed right-wingers. “History,” he called it, and suggested moving on to more important things. The President gave Bloomberg an even better one: through an aide, he announced he would remain neutral in the upcoming mayoral election, which must have his fellow Democrats Bill Thompson et alia really pissed. But they should have seen it coming. Obama has said nice things about Bloomberg’s control of New York schools in the past. Staying simpatico with Obama is smart politics for Bloomberg in an overwhelmingly Democratic city, and playing nice with Bloomberg buys Obama, whose opponents go around calling him a socialist, some nice independent, moderate, and rich-guy credentials. Photo Edward Reed at nyc.gov.