We haven’t heard much from Michael Bloomberg since he dropped out of the race for the Democratic presidential nomination after a not-so-Super Tuesday for the anti-gun billionaire. This week, however, Bloomberg is suddenly back in the news, but for all the wrong reasons.
First, we learned that Bloomberg is donating $40-million to help fund efforts to fight the coronavirus around the world. That’s not nothing, but it’s a pretty paltry amount compared to what he spent trying to become president. In fact, as it turns out Bloomberg spent a lot more money on his campaign than we realized. New FEC filings indicate the anti-gun billionaire spent more than $900-million in his attempt to become president.
From The Hill:
The filings show that the Bloomberg campaign spent more than $500 million on television advertising alone, as well as more than $100 million on digital ads. It also dropped more than $15 million on polling.
The unprecedented spending fueled a Bloomberg surge in the polls after his entry to the primary field and helped cast him as a serious contender and potential rival to former Vice President Joe Biden, another centrist.
Bloomberg, in an apparent recognition of his late entry into the race, skipped the first four nominating contests in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina and appeared set to head into Super Tuesday with the wind at his back.
However, a devastating debate performance in which he was savaged over his past support of stop and frisk and comments about women, and a 30-point rout by Biden in South Carolina derailed his once-promising bid.
Bloomberg’s no centrist, though that’s certainly how he tried to position himself during his campaign. When that campaign ended, Bloomberg said he was going to keep his campaign operation in place and pay all of his staff through November to help elect Joe Biden. This week, we learned that Bloomberg is actually laying off hundredsof staffers and ending their insurance even as the coronavirus pandemic is sweeping across the country.
Many of the Bloomberg aides — including those purged in an initial round of dismissals—were holding out hope he would deliver on a promise to keep them on his payroll through November, particularly with the coronavirus baring down. But those hopes were also dashed Friday when the staffers were told in frank conference calls that Bloomberg would not move ahead with his planned super PAC, and instead would cede his state operation to the DNC, including an $18 million infusion to help presumptive nominee Joe Biden.
Instead of keeping his campaign operation in place as an independent spending group, Bloomberg’s simply closing up shop and handing $18-million to the DNC. Bloomberg’s promise to his staffers turned out to be just as bogus as his promise that we can ban our way to safety when it comes to firearms.
“I guess it’s cheaper to give the DNC $18 million than keep promises because @MikeBloomberg just fired his whole campaign staff — including those of us promised jobs though November on his IE,” Amol Jethwani, a former aide, wrote in a tweet. “Disappointed I don’t have a job. Not surprised that a billionaire is cheating scum.”
Several other former aides said in interviews that the news comes as a massive blow amid the tanking economy. They believe the campaign has repeatedly strung them along while misrepresenting future opportunities.
“I am disgusted by Mike Bloomberg and his staff,” one of the Bloomberg aides, who like several others spoke on the condition of anonymity, told POLITICO on Friday. “He has left us with no health insurance during this pandemic. I have a family and do not know what we will do at the end of the month.”
Making matters worse, hours before the layoffs of hundreds of his staffers, the Bloomberg campaign let workers in his New York campaign headquarters know that they may have been exposed to COVID-19.
In an email sent at 11:03 pm Thursday, with the mundane subject line “Building Update – 229 West 43rd Street,” the campaign’s human resources department wrote: “We’ve just become aware of a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the office at 229 West 43rd Street impacting the 5th and 8th floor.” The campaign wrote that the individual was last in the office on Monday, March 16.
“Think about the potential of someone getting hospitalized on April 1, without coverage, fighting for their life and now being strapped with massive medical debt,” said a staffer in headquarters who fears they were exposed and shared the email with POLITICO. “The campaign’s refusal to extend health care benefits is unconscionable and putting people at grave risk. This is not how you treat people who sacrificed a lot to work for you.”
Actually, this is exactly how Bloomberg treats people who work for him. Remember his last debate performance, where he ignored the actual members of Moms Demand Action and simply talked about “his” gun control groups? Michael Bloomberg is all about Michael Bloomberg, and the Left is now starting to realize what gun owners have known for years; you can’t believe a word of what he says.
I suspect that Bloomberg is going to have a much harder time attracting activists to his anti-gun efforts in the future, given the self-inflicted damage to his brand over the past few months. Many Democrat activists now hold Bloomberg in as much contempt as gun owners do, and that’s very good news for Second Amendment supporters.