If one news outlet had the manpower and mind-set to dig cynically into the many ways Mike Bloomberg is spending his money to become president, it would be Bloomberg News—if it weren’t owned by Mike Bloomberg.
Bloomberg News has always been a follow-the-money kind of news organization. It never needed a common-man theme to justify it. Mr. Bloomberg’s giant spending isn’t just buying ads, it’s driving up ad rates to make it harder for other Democratic candidates to get their messages out, it’s buying up campaign talent so they can’t, it’s corralling Democratic Party influentials to endorse his candidacy or at least mute any noisy criticism of his effort.
When a recording leaked of Mr. Bloomberg defending stop-and-frisk in New York, Andre Fields of the liberal voting-rights group Fair Fight Action rushed out a tweet hitting him as a “true terrorist” but promptly deleted it. Fair Fight Action had received $5 million in funding from Mr. Bloomberg. Three members of the Congressional Black Caucus helped out with timely endorsements of a man who spent at least $90 million on House Democratic races in the last 19 months.
New York Times columnist Tom Friedman on Wednesday joined in with 1,500 words implying that other Democratic candidates should make way for Mr. Bloomberg. He ended his piece with a disclosure that his wife’s charity was supported with Bloomberg donations. . . .
I wouldn’t put it the way his left-wing critics do—that he’s trying to buy the nomination or the presidency. He’s trying to buy the Democratic Party elite. He’s distorting the incentives of activists, officials and campaign fixers who suddenly are thinking less about a presidential victory and more about the Bloomberg gravy train.
Well, given that the GOP establishment backed losers for money for decades, why not give the Dems their chance to cash in on defeat?