Monday, January 13, 2020

Bloomberg Gets Key Boosts from Local Political Figures

Posted By on Mon, Jan 13, 2020 at 10:09 AM

A weekend meet-and-greet in Memphis on behalf of the presidential campaign of Mike Bloomberg made obvious the all-purpose appeal of the former New York mayor as a focus of anti-Trump political sentiment, and boasted at least two major endorsements of Bloomberg by local political figures.
click to enlarge U.S. Rep. Cohen - JB
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  • U.S. Rep. Cohen

Attendees filled to capacity the Midtown law office of Mike Working in Cooper-Young on Saturday. They heard 9th District Congressman Steve Cohen extol Bloomberg’s efforts as a candidate willing to lend his efforts and his financial support to a campaign to defeat the re-election of President Donald Trump. While praising Bloomberg, Cohen said he was maintaining his option to support whatever presidential nominee the Democratic Party should ultimately produce.

On hand for the affair was Greg Fischer, mayor of Louisville, Kentucky, national chairman of Bloomberg’s presidential campaign, who repeated to the crowd what had been assurances of support for Bloomberg’s candidacy made the day before by Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland. Fischer said Strickland could not be present on Saturday because of his need to attend two funerals.

Another outright endorser was present, however, and willing to explain his reasons to the crowd. This was newly elected City Councilman Jeff Warren, a physician who explained his reasoning this way:

“... It's really very simple. I've been listening to try to see who is going to come up with the best possible solution for the health care that we need in our country. And I walked across the parking lot from my office and heard Mayor Bloomberg announce his strategy for how to do that. It makes perfect sense. You know, in red states, where we haven't advanced the Affordable Care Act for our poorest people, he wants to federalize that, and that makes perfect sense to me….

“ Medicare takes four cents on the dollar to administrate compared to most private insurances taking 30 to 40 cents on your health care dollar to do administration. If I could pay my money for my office and get Medicare for my employees, I would like to have that as an option as a businessman in this country. I think that's a brilliant idea.

“And if we can do that, and then work on lowering the violence that we have in our urban community and stop our young people from killing each other, which Bloomberg has developed ways to do and has done successfully in New York, we can see a blossoming of our urban communities. And I think he's the man to do that. So I endorse him wholeheartedly, and I really think his healthcare plan is the best thing we can see in our country ...”

click to enlarge Councilman Warren - JB
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  • Councilman Warren
In his own remarks, Fischer extolled Bloomberg Philanthropies, “operated over 500 cities, over 100 countries, where Mike is taking on issues that basically are getting in the way of people leaving living longer, healthier lives.”

On matters like “health care, gun safety, immigration, women's rights,” said Fischer, Bloomberg has “not only talked about it and funded it, he's done it.” And the Louisville Mayor pointed out the one aspect of the Bloomberg campaign most likely to appeal to Democrats at large.

"He's running, but at the same time, he's running 100 million dollars a day in the battleground states to make the case against Trump, not for Mike Bloomberg, for whomever the Democratic nominee is going to be. He's got $20 million to work in those states to increase voter registration, not for Mike Bloomberg. And he said I'm going to keep all my offices open across this country, regardless if I'm the candidate or not, because we gotta beat Donald Trump.

The Bloomberg campaign, in other words, exists for its own sake, but, also and ultimately, as a de facto auxiliary to the campaign of every other Democrat running for President, and, in particular, on behalf of the party’s nominee, whoever that happens to be, right up to election day. It’s an offer that’s hard to refuse."

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