Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg has come under fire for remarks he made in 2015 about his controversial stop-and-frisk policy conducted during his time as New York City mayor, USA Today reported. He has since apologized for the remarks. However, Bloomberg does have the support of white nationalist Richard Spencer, who recently took to Twitter to praise the 78-year-old businessman.
“If you define your outlook with terms like ‘race realism’ or express concern over ‘demographics,’ then I must ask, unironically, is Mike Bloomberg not your man?” Spencer tweeted, linking to the audio of Bloomberg’s controversial comments on stop and frisk.
“While Trump brags about releasing minority criminals, Mike has a record of locking them up. Bloomberg’s entire reason for running is to maintain the status quo, another one of your expressed desires. Seriously, why not Mike?”
In the clip, Bloomberg claims that the majority of murderers and murder victims are male minorities between the ages of 15 to 25, and suggested it was the reason that policemen are placed in minority neighborhoods.
“Why do you do it? Because that’s where all the crime is,” he said.
In response to the audio clip, President Donald Trump slammed Bloomberg as a “TOTAL RACIST” in a tweet that was later deleted, per CNBC. New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez also blasted Bloomberg and did not appear to accept his apology for the policy.
“People lost their fathers, people lost their brothers,” she said, adding that arrest records cannot be “expunged with a tweet.”
In a VILE display of defending @MikeBloomberg's racism, @cnn responds to audio unearthed by @BenjaminPDixon that shows Bloomberg saying you stop crime by frisking minorities by...— Jordan (@JordanChariton) February 11, 2020
Attacking Dixon as a Bernie supporter, questioning how he got the audio—and what his motives are. pic.twitter.com/nBkBbPU6Kr
The endorsement from Spencer will likely not help Bloomberg as he continues to face accusations of racism. A newly released report reveals a 1998 lawsuit that claims the billionaire berated a female employee that had recently had a child. According to the report, Bloomberg told the woman to hire “some black” as a nanny to take care of her baby. A spokesperson for Bloomberg’s campaign claims that the businessman never made such comments.
In another controversial statement, Bloomberg claimed that the 2008 housing crisis was caused partly by the end of “redlining,” which is a discriminatory practice that systematically denied mortgages to low-income, mostly minority neighborhoods.
Despite his troubles, USA Today reports that Bloomberg continues to garner black support. Just one day following the release of Bloomberg’s comments defending his stop-and-frisk policy, Rep. Gregory Meeks endorsed the billionaire for president and claimed that the businessman’s “bad policy” was “just trying to save lives.”
Bloomberg currently has four endorsements from the influential Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), which is higher than any other Democratic presidential candidate, aside from former Vice President Joe Biden.