Liam Neeson Blasts de Blasio for Proposed Horse Carriage Ban

Thursday, 27 Feb 2014 11:00 AM

By Melanie Batley

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Oscar-winning actor Liam Neeson appeared on stage Wednesday in a new role as lobbyist for New York's horse and carriage industry, blasting New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's proposed horse carriage ban.

"I'm a little bit pissed off at our elected new mayor," Neeson told Jon Stewart on "The Daily Show." "He wants to close this horse and carriage industry in New York. There was a poll last week. Over 60 percent of New Yorkers want to keep the horse carriage industry in Central Park."

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The star of the new movie, "Non-Stop," has publicly spoken out against the proposal since de Blasio's announcement two days before his Jan. 1 inauguration that he would get rid of horse carriages in the city.

The move aligns de Blasio with animal activists who believe horse-drawn carriages, which take New York City tourists around Central Park, are inhumane.

"These organizations want to put out this—all this false information about how these horses are treated," Neeson said. "And these guys treat these horses like their children."

He added that de Blasio "won't even take a meeting with the horse carriage industry. He is supposed to be representing the New York people."

After criticism for never visiting the stables where the horses are kept, de Blasio agreed at a press conference last week to go, but insisted he would not change his mind, according to the Daily Caller.

This is not the first time Neeson used the Stewart show to take a stand on the issue, having made a 2009 appearance when he also passionately defended the industry, describing himself as a "horse rider and lover for many, many years."

"They've been there for 100 years. They are an iconic part of New York. They are an iconic part of Central Park," he said at the time, the Daily Caller reported.

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