Monday’s Headlines: Presidents Day Edition

President Trump's retaliation against New York City, Portland, and Seattle could threaten those city's public transportation and Covid-19 recovery.
President Trump's retaliation against New York City, Portland, and Seattle could threaten those city's public transportation and Covid-19 recovery.

It’s Presidents Day, so the hard-working staff of Streetsblog will take the day off to think about our nation’s history, specifically, given that we’re in an election year, all our one-term presidents: John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Martin Van Buren, John Tyler, James K. Polk*, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, Rutherford B. Hayes, Benjamin Harrison, William Howard Taft, Herbert Hoover (of course), Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush.

The asterisk above? Polk ran on a one-term promise, so he doesn’t really count as a repudiated leader.

Will the current chief executive end up on that list? He’s certainly repudiated by many, perhaps even a majority, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be re-elected come November.

Lots to think about. Until then, here are the headlines:

  • Breaking news: The Onion finally hired Cuozzo (NY Post). Seriously, of all the negative stuff written about Mike Bloomberg over the weekend, this was the best fist-shaking that the old man could do?
  • An upstate Republican candidate wants to the feds to exercise their power to stop congestion pricing. The candidate, who is challenging Rep. Sean Maloney, calls the tolls an “onerous new tax which will hurt commuters and NYC businesses alike” (even as it reduces productivity-sapping congestion and helps fund major subway improvements). (Patch)
  • In case you missed it, the Ned Berke-less Brooklyn Daily Eagle is once again shilling for the BQX streetcar, with another pro-trolley op-ed.
  • Man, the Post is really upset about something it’s usually not very upset about at all: the plight of Queens bus riders.
  • Gee, if there was only something we could do to reduce road carnage, maybe stuff like this wouldn’t happen. (NYDN)
  • Another de Blasio unforced error: His pick for the MTA board gets to work every day in a chauffeur-driven city car. (NY Post)
  • UPS and FedEx alone accounted for $33 million in parking tickets last year — and even the companies are telling the city that it has failed to manage the curb to keep roads flowing. (Freightwaves)
  • Families for Safe Streets was in Albany on Saturday lobbying for a crash victim’s “Bill of Rights,” but local TV news in the state capital didn’t take it very seriously, judging by the cursory coverage (WRGB, News10). So, to be clear, the “Traffic Crash Victims’ Bill of Rights” would provide restitution to victims and enact victims’ rights in legal proceedings, comparable to the federal Crime Victims’ Rights Bill, the group says.
  • City Limits reminded us anew why the mayor’s 100-cop Vision Zero Unit probably won’t amount to much.
  • And the Wall Street Journal reminded us anew why Uber and Lyft lied about reducing congestion. (Because it’s paywalled, we’ll give you the gist: “Cutting-edge algorithms, they believed, would steer behavior through pricing and route-matching, letting drivers spend little time between trips. Riders leaving their cars at home would then increasingly hop on buses, bikes or walk in a gridlock-easing ripple effect. That utopia hasn’t come to pass.”)
  • The MTA’s decision to remove the back panels on subway benches is a cruel way to discourage homeless people from sleeping there. But the agency’s other method — 500 more cops — is certainly worse. (Gothamist)
  • In case you missed it, a new study shows what we all know: Design cities for transit and fewer people die on the roads. To get to zero, you need the vision. (Fast Company)
  • In a related study, most mayors know how to make their cities safer, but are reluctant to do it. (State Smart Transportation Initiative)
  • And, finally, obviously Bill Kristol has never ridden the Moscow subway system because say what you will about Bernie Sanders, but he is 100 percent right about the Moscow subway system.