New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg comments on the overturn of his proposed ban on large sugary drinks when he visits the LATE SHOW with DAVID LETTERMAN, Monday, March 11.
A State Supreme Court judge today stopped Mayor Bloomberg's administration from banning New York City restaurants, movie theaters and other establishments from selling sugary beverages over 16 ounces, one day before the new law was to take effect. Public health initiatives have been a cornerstone of Mayor Bloomberg’s tenure at City Hall.
Letterman: "We heard today that the sugary 16-ounce soda ban has been overruled by the state court. Is that what happened?"
Mayor Bloomberg: "State court judge said the Department of Health didn’t have the authority to do it. We think that they do. We’ll appeal. In the meantime, this year, 70,000 Americans will die from obesity, 5,000 here in New York. We’ve got to do something about it."
Letterman: "Seventy thousand Americans?"
Bloomberg: "Seventy thousand people will die from obesity."
Letterman: "And what would be the statistics of people who are dying of starvation versus people who are dying from obesity?"
Bloomberg: "For the first time in the history of the world, more people will die from overeating than undereating this year."
Letterman: "Is that remarkable?"
Bloomberg: "It’s all happened in the last 20 years."
Letterman: "And now I’ve had this argument with various people over the years, and I believe that it’s the corporate food industry, not the individual that is at fault here."
Bloomberg: "I think that it is incumbent upon government to tell people what they’re doing to themselves and let people make their own decisions. So our job is to educate people, and the ban on bigger cup sizes was a way to remind you if you wanted 32 ounces, you’d have to take two cups, so maybe you’d only take one. But people have a right to make products, and people have a right to buy them, and I don’t know which comes first."
Letterman: "The argument can also be made that in a country of this size and around most of the world, it takes this kind of operation to feed all of these people. But it is so engineered - the taste, the sweetness, the saltiness, the amount of pressure one needs to crack a potato chip with their teeth, has all been engineered so people continue to eat that kind of food."
Bloomberg: "As long as you don’t ban Cheez-Its. Cheez-Its are okay. That’s my addiction." (Audience laughs, applauds)
Mayor Bloomberg’s entire interview, including his advocacy for stricter gun control laws, can be seen on the LATE SHOW tonight (11:35 PM-12:37 AM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
Also featured on the LATE SHOW tonight is a performance by musical guests Depeche Mode.
The LATE SHOW with DAVID LETTERMAN is a production of Worldwide Pants Incorporated. Barbara Gaines, Matt Roberts, Jude Brennan, Maria Pope, Eric Stangel, Justin Stangel and Rob Burnett are the executive producers.