awards

Address by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg
September 23, 2008
It is an honor to share the dais with a great business leader and philanthropist, Jeff Immelt. Iíve known Jeff for a long time. He really is when you say Mr. Good Citizen Ė Jeff Immelt comes right to mind. He is a statesman who America can count on for today and for Americaís future. He has brought fresh leadership to the corporate world as has President Sarkozy to the diplomatic world and the political world. And my admiration for both of these gentlemen knows no bounds, although actually it probably does, but nevertheless.

Mr. President, I just wanted to say thank you on behalf of all, not just the New Yorkers, who are reminded of our close relationship to France every time they come through our harbor. But also I have never forgotten that back in about the year 1776, when we were trying to win our independence, let the record show, it was France that came to our aid, so thank you very much.

Now, itís often been said that New Yorkís mayor is the only local, elected official with his own foreign policy. The state department doesnít find that funny because itís probably more true than not. But nevertheless, we are, what I would argue, the worldís international city and itís partly because we are home to the United Nations, whose General Assembly is meeting this week and who caused chaos on the streets such that the President was late in arriving. Actually, we like traffic, Mr. President, it says things are going well, the alternative is not good.

Anyways, we are a city that people have come to from around the world. Iíve always been phenomenally proud of what America stands for. And I always wish my father had lived long enough to see the success, not just of my sister and I, but of his grandchildren who have come to this city. This city has been great to all of us and it really is something we should be proud of.

We had a terrible event occur in 9/11. We pulled together as I always knew we would. And we have, rather than look back, tried to look forward, teach the world what happened then, why there was intolerance and what we have to do to make sure that something like that does not happen in America or in France or in any part of this world.

Mr. President, I just want to say thank you so much for coming. The values of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation really are the values that I think all of us share. And it is great to have a real ally as France is and as you are for this county. We deeply appreciate it. We are honored that you and Madame Sarkozy are here. We want you to come back and we particularly want you to spend a lot of money while you are here. We need the sales tax revenues.

I have to go to the next event, but on behalf of 8.3 million people, to both of you, welcome.

Thank you!
Thank you everyone!
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