NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio dropped his plan to cap the number of Uber vehicles operating on city streets after facing backlash from Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Uber drivers, and celebrities.
"The mayor and allies on the City Council, long comrades-in-arms with the yellow cab industry, had planned to pass a law restricting the growth of Uber and similar services for a year while conducting a study of their impact, on the ground that they were adding to traffic congestion," the New York Daily News wrote in an editorial
"De Blasio threw around numbers, such as that Uber is adding cars at a rate of 2,000 a month, strongly implying it is to blame for slowing traffic. But his own administration’s Taxi & Limousine Commission had data clearly showing that de Blasio’s contentions were at best misleading."
The fight ended this week with Uber agreeing to share data with the city as it conducts four-month impact study on taxis, Uber, and other vehicle-for-hire operations.
During the dustup, many celebrities who live in New York tweeted their support for keeping Uber's fleet uncapped.
New York magazine credited
de Blasio's defeat in large part to Uber chief adviser and board member David Plouffe, the man behind Obama's 2008 presidential win.
He orchestrated a multifront campaign against the proposed cap that cost an estimated $3.2 million for mailings, robocalls, and bus ads alone.
In one TV ad, "Don't Let Mayor de Blasio Strand New Yorkers," Uber argued that taxi drivers often discriminate against minority communities and the sections of the city in which they live. It also suggested that de Blasio was on the side of the taxi industry because it donated to his 2013 campaign — more than $500,000.
Uber also arranged a rally at city hall on Monday, led by its drivers and other supporters, and also created a "De Blasio" button on its app that made all the for-hire cars disappear from the city map.
"The last thing you should be doing, if you’re trying to create jobs in a city, provide more economic opportunity, have more environmentally friendly transportation options – this is the exactly wrong thing to do," Plouffe said in a "CBS This Morning" interview this week.
"At the end of the day, I think the motivation here is the taxi industry has showered the mayor, the City Council president, and others with a lot of money, and this is payback."
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