Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's campaign for president was doomed from the get-go. Not only did he jump into the race later than the other 2020 Democratic candidates, but his campaign decided to skip the Iowa Caucuses, New Hampshire Primary, Nevada Caucuses and South Carolina Primary. Instead, Bloomberg's team made a conscious decision to focus on Super Tuesday, the day when the most delegates were up for grabs. Despite spending more than $500 million dollars on an aggressive ad campaign, the mayor's results were abysmal. He won American Samoa, which garnered a whopping five delegates. The remaining delegate from the territory went to Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI).
Despite the terrible strategy from the beginning, it turns out Bloomberg's campaign staffers lacked enthusiasm and some were even secretly working to get their preferred candidate elected, The Nation reported.
When Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) pressed Bloomberg on sexual harassment allegations and actively removing the gag on those who were bound by an NDA, the former NYC mayor declined. His staffers cited that specific exchange as the campaign's implosion.
Former staffers had to talk to The Nation on the condition of anonymity because of Bloomberg's infamous nondisclosure agreements.
“The people who liked Mike initially didn’t care about the sexual [harassment] allegations or stop and frisk, but they got turned off because they thought he made himself look weak and that he had let Warren walk all over him," the second field organizer explained. “I had to organize [a] debate watch party.… The whole bar was full of Bloombros. You could just feel everyone getting silent and awkward whenever Warren tore into Bloomberg.”
It's looking more and more like Bloomberg's staffers joined the campaign to make a quick buck, not because they believed in his candidacy. And that even includes members of the leadership team.
“Most people knew this was a grift,” a campaign staffer explained.“At our first office meeting, my [director] said, ‘We don’t need to canvass. We can just make calls, right guys?’ And everyone was like, ‘Yeah, that’s sensible.’”
But the real kicker is that these staffers allegedly campaigned on behalf of Bloomberg's opponents.
“I would actively canvass for Bernie when I was supposed to be canvassing for Mike. I know of at least one team of ‘volunteers’ that was entirely fabricated by the organizers who had to hit their goals," a former staffer told The Nation. "It was easy enough to fudge the data to make it look like real people put in real volunteer work, when in reality Mike was getting nothing out of it.”
A former staffer in the San Diego area said the Bloomberg campaign was used to advance other races they were actively working on.
“In San Diego, the regional organizers also exploited the campaign’s resources, staff, and infrastructure for local races they either were running in or consulting on," the person revealed.
MaryAnne Pintar, the Bloomberg campaign's Regional Political Director, disagreed with the anonymous source.
“If the person quoted falsified reports, that reflects upon that individual’s work ethic and does not reflect the good, hard work done by our team on the whole. I never witnessed this, nor did I see resources used inappropriately," Pintar said in a statement. "This campaign started late; some were already working on other campaigns and received hiring offers commensurate with capacity, with the understanding they'd be working on other campaigns, too. The person quoted anonymously may not know this."
In addition to utilizing campaign resources, staffers admitted to faking voter contact data, including the number of calls made and doors knocked.
What does all of this prove? Loyalty cannot be bought... and neither can the presidency.
Editor's Note: This post has been updated with a statement from MaryAnne Pintar.