“The Democratic Party stands at a crossroads, and needs leadership that will expand our vision to more Americans — while also intensifying our commitment to our core values. Keith Ellison is that leader,” de Blasio said in a statement provided to NBC News.
The mayor of the country’s largest city has positioned himself as a national progressive leader and is the latest in a long list of liberals supporting Ellison. But de Blasio also has longstanding ties to Hillary Clinton, whose 2000 Senate campaign he managed and whom he backed in the Democratic presidential primary.
In his endorsement, de Blasio called Ellison “a unifier who worked tirelessly for both Bernie Sanders and then Hillary Clinton, he will bring the party and the grassroots together while broadening and deepening the Democratic Party’s connections to the American people.”
And the mayor praised Ellison as a “grassroots organizer,” who “has delivered real results like voter turnout in his native Minnesota,” while also being a “passionate fighter for economic fairness.”
The endorsement comes just before Tom Perez’s official entry into the race to be the next chairman of the DNC. According to a Politico survey of the voting members of the Democratic National Committee, Ellison is the frontrunner right now but he has not put this race away. De Blasio is up for re-election in 2017.