Summer internships are destroying the American Dream

Of the 1,500 unpaid interns hired into Michael Bloomberg’s mayoral office in New York City in 2002, at least one in five had been recommended by someone within the administration. And one successful candidate had an especially easy interview: Emma Bloomberg. For the mayor’s daughter to land the coveted position, a special waiver had to be granted by the city’s Conflicts of Interest Board, which publicly asks city employees to “resist natural parental instincts” when making recommendations.

When Bill de Blasio took office in January 2014, he was determined to strike a new, more progressive path than his predecessor. As he said at his inauguration: “We are called to put an end to economic and social inequalities that threaten to unravel the city we love.” That summer, the chair of the Conflicts of Interest Board, recently appointed by de Blasio, issued waivers for two summer interns: Chiara de Blasio and Dante de Blasio, the mayor’s daughter and son.

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