De Blasio to unveil national agenda pushing Democrats to the left

As newly-announced presidential candidate Hillary Clinton moves to shore up support among her liberal base, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is preparing to lay out a national, progressive agenda in hopes of pulling the Democratic Party further to the left ahead of the 2016 election.

“We are at a moment in history where we need to hear a clear vision for addressing the economic reality, a number of us have put together such a vision,” de Blasio said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

Morning Joe, 5/6/15, 7:21 AM ET

De Blasio: I'm optimistic about Hillary

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio discusses the state of Hillary Clinton’s campaign, saying he believes she’s fashioning a progressive agenda and that he looks forward to her comments on income inequality.
De Blasio – who became a major national player in Democratic politics when he was elected in 2014 – will announce a 13-point legislative agenda on the Capitol steps Tuesday, mirroring Newt Gingrich’s 1994 “Contract with America,” according to an exclusive report by Politico.

The manifesto – “Progressive Agenda to Combat Income Inequality” – will call for universal pre-kindergarten programs, raising the minimum wage, paid family leave, and tax “fairness,” among other proposals that were put together after an April summit at Gracie Mansion with labor and other progressive leaders.

More than 60 major Democratic players have signed on to the agenda, Politico reports, including Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Reps. Keith Ellison of Minnesota, Raúl Grijalva of Arizona, and Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, Howard Dean, and national labor leaders.

De Blasio’s progressive agenda has put the Democratic mayor in an odd spot with the Clintons, with whom he has longstanding ties after working for both Bill and Hillary. While the Clintons endorsed him in his campaign for mayor, de Blasio has so far declined to return the favor: On “Morning Joe” Tuesday, he said he needed to hear Hillary Clinton’s stance on income inequality before committing to backing her candidacy. 

“I’m optimistic about where she’s going,” he said. 

Bill de Blasio and Hillary Clinton

De Blasio to unveil national agenda pushing Democrats to the left