Bill de Blasio’s victory can be credited to some hardcore debate prep:
In our tick-tock today outlining how Bill de Blasio went from fourth place to mayor-elect, we point to the televised debate on Aug. 13 as a turning point for the campaign.
A poll released hours earlier showed de Blasio with a six-point lead for the first time in the race — but his rivals hadn’t yet figured out how to attack him and continued to direct their best barbs at City Council Speaker Christine Quinn.
“De Blasio was ready for attacks that never came,” campaign manager Bill Hyers told us.
That’s because debate prep was serious business at de Blasio HQ.
A small group of top aides would meet every Saturday before debates for a “full mock.” They would congregate in empty law firm meeting rooms, or church basements for the run-through, staffers said.
Hyers was vigilant about letting no more than eight people into the room to watch, and allowing only one person to speak during the session to offer critiques.
De Blasio’s 16-year-old son Dante, who is on a debate team himself, came to a few sessions. But he would give his input later, in private.