Rolling Stone: In Leaked Audio Bloomberg Defends Big Banks, Calls Warren ‘Scary’ in 2016

Kudos to Rolling Stone for finding this:

In a 2016 audio recording from what is thought to be a private Goldman Sachs event, Bloomberg first can be heard referring to the audience as “my peeps.” He then went on to talk about what his priorities would be if he were running for president. “Well, to start, my first campaign platform would be to defend the banks, and you know how well that’s gonna sell in this country,” he said.

Bloomberg continued, “But seriously. somebody’s gotta stand up and do what we need. A healthy banking system that’s going to take risks because that’s what creates the jobs for everybody. And nobody’s willing to say that. The trouble is, these campaigns in this day and age, really are about slogans and not about issues anymore. And in this election you’re going to see people are voting and they either love or hate, mostly hate both, but who you hate the least. That’s what they’re going to vote for. And they’re not going to vote on issues.”

Also in the audio, according to CNN, Bloomberg can be heard calling Elizabeth Warren and other progressives “scary.”

“The left is arising. The progressive movement is just as scary,” Bloomberg said. “Elizabeth Warren on one side. And whoever you want to pick on the Republicans on the right side?”

That’s not the only bad part:

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg attacked the progressive left and appeared to suggest that Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) could have made a better president than former President Obama in audio obtained by CNN.

In audio from a private 2016 event obtained by CNN's KFile, the former mayor suggested that Romney would have made a better president than Obama in 2012 had the Republican candidate pledged to govern as he did while governor of Massachusetts.

“The second Obama election I wrote a very backhanded endorsement of Obama,” Bloomberg said in 2016 of his prior endorsement of Obama for reelection. “Saying I thought he hadn't done the right thing, hadn't done, hadn't been good at things that I think are important and Romney would be a better person at doing that. But Romney did not stick with the values that he had when he was governor of Massachusetts.”

But hey, Bloombrg’s been the perfect practice punching bag for Warren. Here’s what she said at her event in Denver:

After the rally, which drew an over-capacity crowd of about 4,000, Warren told reporters she was disappointed in her Nevada finish but was ready to compete in the South Carolina primary next Saturday. She cited a surge of campaign donations, totaling $9 million, following the debate. She also placed second in a new CBS News/YouGov national poll taken since the debate, behind U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, the front-runner.

“We will not be told that we don’t belong in this race — and we sure as heck won’t step aside for someone else to run for president when we know Elizabeth Warren is the best gal to lead this nation,” said state Sen. Kerry Donovan, addressing the crowd before Warren took the stage.

Warren, speaking and taking questions for nearly an hour during the afternoon rally, focused her fire on the more moderate Bloomberg, who’s also faced questions about civil rights issues, as Democrats’ riskiest choice. The late-entering candidate has skipped the early contests, instead blanketing Colorado and other Super Tuesday states with TV ads ahead of their primaries on March 3.

But Warren declined to criticize Sanders. Asked by a reporter if Sanders, too, offered risks as a nominee, she would only criticize Bloomberg again and say: “I think I am the least risky candidate. … I think it’s clear right now that the Democratic Party wants to see a progressive, and I’m a progressive who’s fought all my life for these values, and who’s actually gotten a lot done.”

In her speech, Warren pitched her plans for immigration reform, including a path to citizenship for those in the country illegally, and to address gun violence. She talked up her proposals for Medicare for All and a wealth tax that would provide money to pay for several programs, including universal child care.

While Warren is gaining steam, the attacks are coming at her from the usual people and places. Like Joe Scarborough:

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough on Monday questioned whether Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) should drop out of the Democratic presidential race, noting that Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is building a lead as other candidates stay in the contest but fail to build substantial support.

Scarborough spoke of increased chatter that Warren and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) might need to drop out to “consolidate efforts against Bernie Sanders.”

Warren is in fourth place in Nevada's caucuses, which took place over the weekend, while Klobuchar is now in sixth place.

“People are talking about how as well as she’s done, as good of a campaign she’s run, it is time for her to get out of the race,” Scarborough said of Klobuchar before pivoting to Warren. “A lot of people starting to talk about Elizabeth Warren, who finished weak again.”

“She finished in fourth place in her neighboring home state where she was supposed to win in New Hampshire last week. This week another disappointing finish. She’s maybe in single digits. She’s up to 10 percent now, but she’s in single digits in most of these counts,” he said.

“Is it time for Elizabeth Warren? If she keeps finishing in fourth, fifth place, is it time to her to get out of the race to help consolidate efforts against Bernie Sanders? That’s what a lot of buzz on Twitter suggesting that’s the case,” Scarborough concluded.

And I don’t want to start a pie fight but this does not look good:

During the most recent presidential primary debate in Las Vegas, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) suggested that critiques of some of his most antagonistic online supporters are largely unfounded and unfair, proposing that some of the worst offenders might actually be Russian trolls on a mission to sow disunity in the field.

But the private Twitter account of a newly promoted campaign staffer indicates that despite his condemnation of online harassment, at least some of the Vermont senator’s most toxic support is coming from inside the house.

Using the account @perma_ben, Ben Mora, a regional field director for Sanders’ campaign based in Michigan, has attacked other Democrats in the field—as well as their family members, surrogates, journalists, and politically active celebrities—in deeply personal terms, mocking their physical appearance, gender, and sexuality, among other things.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Mora has tweeted, “looks like her name: pained, chunky, [and] confused origin/purpose.” Former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg “is what happens when the therapist botches the conversion,” and his husband, Chasten, Mora predicts, will be “busted for running a meth racket” in 10 years. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), a frequent subject of Mora’s private account, is called a “dumb Okie,” “an adult diaper fetishist” who “looks like shit” and who lied about having Native American ancestry “to get into Harvard.”

The account, from which Mora tweeted as recently as Sunday morning, is the latest example of a small subset of Sanders’ extremely online loyalists whose support for his candidacy is paired with extreme hostility to his rivals, critics, and those seen as insufficiently supportive of Sanders’ platform of democratic socialism.

But let’s not let any of this distract us from winning big on Super Tuesday. Click here to donate and get involved with Warren’s campaign.