New York City Mayor Eric Adams said that the reason residents are leaving the Big Apple in droves is, in part, due to the ongoing rat infestation.
“Some people who have children and families decide they want to go to a place where their children can play outdoors, larger green spaces, you want to see animals — you don’t see animals except for rats in New York,” Adams said when asked about the plunging population data.
“So there’s a combination of things,” he said. “And we are getting rid of those rats, by the way.”
The Democratic mayor said that there has been “perfect storm” of reasons why people are leaving New York City-including the cost of living, COVID-19, remote job opportunities along with the rats.
“Well, I think there’s a combination on why people are leaving the city. The city and cities have become unaffordable,” Adams said. “And people left the city during COVID-19 for a short period of time and some decided that they no longer want to come back into cities. Then you have the remote work option where you don’t have to be in an office space to do the job. You could do it from wherever.”
“And so there’s a perfect storm of reasons that cities are losing their population. And at one time you may have lost 20,000 here, 15,000 here. But now when you start to add up all of those dynamics, it’s a different way of life,” Adams said.
The mayor said that the continued influx of migrants may help the floundering census data.
“So, we don’t want people to leave, but people are also moving into the city. I see first-time New Yorkers over and over again, people are moving in and there are 152,000 migrants,” Adams said. “If you were to do an analysis of those who are behind me, an overwhelming number of them are immigrants. They come from first generations.
“So, they went from their parents coming here trying to be citizens to now they’re in charge of what happens to citizens.”
Of the eight states that saw their populations fall in 2023, New York lost the most residents, seeing 101,984 people depart the Empire State.
That was followed by California, which lost 75,423 residents, Illinois, which lost 32,826, and Louisiana, at 14,274. Pennsylvania saw 10,408 residents leave the state, while Oregon saw 6,021 move away. Hawaii lost 4,261, and West Virginia lost 3,964, according to the new Vintage 2023 population estimates.
South Carolina and Florida were the two fastest-growing states in the nation, growing by 1.7% and 1.6%, respectively, in 2023.
House Republican Conference Chairwoman Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., said the mass exodus from New York demonstrated “the consequences of Far Left Democrat leadership.”
“Far Left [Governor] Kathy Hochul and Albany Democrats have made New York so unlivable that our state leads the nation in population loss with more than 102,000 residents leaving in one year alone,” Stefanik said in a statement. “With record crime and cost of living far beyond the national average, New York’s mass exodus is far from over. If Far Left Democrats in Albany don’t start putting the safety and prosperity of New Yorkers before their extremist agenda, there will be no more residents left to tax and fund their radical, socialist programs.”
Mayor Eric Adams’ office did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.
Fox News’ Danielle Wallace contributed to this report.