Menino apologizes for saying he’d ‘blow up’ Detroit

September 4, 2013

Boston Mayor Thomas Menino (D) apologized Wednesday for his remark that he would "blow up" Detroit and "start all over" there.

In an interview with the New York Times magazine published Aug. 30, Menino mentioned Detroit as another major city he'd live in, aside from Boston. When asked what he would do there, Menino responded, "I’d blow up the place and start all over. No, seriously, when it takes a police officer 90 minutes to answer a call, there’s something wrong with the system. Forty percent of the streetlights are out, most of the buildings are boarded up. Why? Inaction, that’s the problem — leadership."

Detroit Mayor Dave Bing (D) ripped Menino's comments, calling them "extremely regrettable," and saying Menino got his facts wrong. He added, "I would think the mayor of a city that recently experienced a deadly bombing attack would be more sensitive and not use the phrase ‘blow up.’"

On Wednesday, Menino said he was sorry. "I made a mistake, I apologize," he told WBZ Radio in Boston.

Menino is the longest-serving mayor in Boston's history. He has previously said he will step down after the current term, which is his fifth.

Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.
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