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La Guardia’s the Name and Boy, Could We Use Him Now


La Guardia’s the Name and Boy, Could We Use Him Now

Michael Winship

One of the most awkward interviews I ever conducted in my life was with Marie La Guardia, widow of the late three-term mayor of New York City, the legendary Fiorello H. La Guardia.

She was 86 at the time. I was researching a project about her husband and arrived at her home in Bronxville, New York, with several pages of questions about Fiorello and their life together.

Despite all those pages, our conversation was over in about 15 minutes because to each one of my many queries her answer was “Yes,” No,” or “I don’t remember,” even when I tried to follow up.


Recall that FDR was Governor of New York when the 1929 crash hit and in 1930 was one of the few politicians anywhere to actually implement programs to help the 99%, albeit in one, not 48 states. As FDR was elected POTUS and took his efforts national in 1933, La Guardia had no choice but to embrace the New Deal when he was elected in New York the following year. The New Deal had its roots in New York and fighting it would have been political suicide.

10% of US voters during that era voted for socialist or communist candidates, so both FDR and La Guardia had cover to toss the 99% a few crumbs under the guise of keeping the US from going commie. With 98% of US voters voting corporate Democrats or corporate GOP in 2012, and fewer than 1% voting for the two socialist candidates combined, the Democrats and GOP have zero incentive to toss any crumbs to the 99% and every incentive to withdraw what little remains of FDR's and La Guardia's New Deal.