Billionaire Michael Bloomberg recently jumped into the 2020 Democratic presidential primary race, much to the ire of fellow Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, whose campaign believes the businessman’s run is attempting to undermine the Sanders candidacy. But while Sanders believes Bloomberg’s wealth makes him a non-contender in the race, Bloomberg believes that it gives him a leg-up on other candidates by rendering him immune to corruption.
Bloomberg made the claim during a campaign event in Phoenix, Arizona, on Tuesday, during which he noted that Donald Trump was the only person in the 2020 race spending money in the state along with other swing states.
According to Bloomberg, he plans to spend money on regions that remain untouched by other candidates. He also believes that he has what it takes to beat Trump in the 2020 election.
“I know how to take on the powerful special interests that corrupt Washington. I know how to win because I’ve done it time and time again,” he said.
“I will be the only candidate in this race who isn’t corruptible, who isn’t going to take a penny from anyone, and will work for a dollar a year.”
Despite his claim, Bloomberg’s run has already raised some ethical red flags for some. Given that he owns the media outlet Bloomberg, which reportedly ordered its employees not to investigate the Democratic presidential candidates after the launch of Bloomberg’s campaign, some believe that such a conflict of interest is unethical.
Bloomberg Industry Group Guild recently took a hit at the publication’s decision.
“We are extremely alarmed by management’s decision to silence the journalists we represent at Bloomberg Industry Group, as well as the unrepresented journalists at Bloomberg News,” the group said in a statement.
Former White House ethics lawyer Richard Painter believes that Bloomberg must “sell his financial services and media companies” and ensure that control of his foundation does not remain in the family should he become president.
Just in: Extraordinary statement from Bloomberg News Editor-In-Chief John Micklethwait about Bloomberg’s coverage plans of Mike Bloomberg’s candidacy: Bloomberg Editorial board suspended, no “investigation” of Mike, his family or foundation: pic.twitter.com/afjsHDQg0d— Paul Farhi (@farhip) November 24, 2019
Bloomberg’s run has also been blasted by the Sanders campaign, which believes that the billionaire’s target is not Trump but the Vermont senator. Sanders’ speechwriter, David Sirota, noted that Bloomberg’s entry into the presidential race is timed with Sanders’ rise in the polls as well as the businessman’s alleged meeting with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. According to Sirota, Bezos is Sanders’ “nemesis,” and the billionaire allegedly pressed the former New York City mayor to run for president.
Others are also skeptical of his run. MSNBC anchor Katy Tur believes that Bloomberg’s campaign may be a covert attempt to “torpedo” Elizabeth Warren’s campaign.