Mar 20, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Bloomberg scraps plan to create own PAC, donates $18 million to DNC

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Mike Bloomberg's 2020 campaign announced Friday that he would scrap his plan to create his own PAC — which would utilize his campaign infrastructure and staff to support the Democratic nominee — and will instead donate $18 million to the DNC.

Why it matters: It's a significant reneging of a key promise from the New York billionaire, who pledged to continue to pay his campaign staff at least through November to back whoever was selected to take on President Trump.

  • Earlier this month, Bloomberg dismissed a slew of campaign staffers and told them to reapply for spots in the new PAC, per Politico.

What they're saying:

"While we considered creating our own independent entity to support the nominee and hold the President accountable, this race is too important to have many competing groups with good intentions but that are not coordinated and united in strategy and execution. The dynamics of the race have also fundamentally changed, and it is critically important that we all do everything we can to support our eventual nominee and scale the Democratic Party’s general election efforts. 
"We therefore believe the best thing we can all do over the next eight months is to help the group that matters most in this fight: the Democratic National Committee."

The state of play: The Bloomberg campaign said the $18 million would hopefully be used to expand the DNC's effort "across battleground states, drawing in part from our own incredibly experienced and talented organizing staff."

  • It also said the campaign would transfer several of his former field offices to state parties and work to "accelerate the hiring pace for important positions in organizing, data, and operations."
  • A DNC official added they are working with every former primary presidential campaign to facilitate the transition of their infrastructure into supporting Democrats’ general election efforts.

The big picture: Joe Biden's campaign called the investment "extraordinary," adding it "will go a long way in ensuring that we can fund the grassroots efforts in key battleground states that will be necessary to win this November."

  • DNC Chair Tom Perez said that Bloomberg and his team were "making good on their commitment to beating Donald Trump" with the donation.

Between the lines: Former candidates' committees can make unlimited transfers to the DNC under federal law, per a DNC official.

  • So, in theory, Bloomberg's $18 million could be just the beginning.

Worth noting: Bloomberg spent more than $100 million to help flip the House for Democrats during the 2018 midterm elections.

Go deeper: Bloomberg's historic bust

Go deeper

Fired Bloomberg staffers file class-action lawsuit over stiffed pay

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Former campaign staffers for billionaire Michael Bloomberg's 2020 bid have filed a class-action lawsuit after the former candidate reneged on a promise to pay them through November, even if he were not the nominee.

The big picture: Bloomberg, who dropped out and endorsed Joe Biden earlier this month, fired staffers on Friday and reversed his plans to form a super PAC for the 2020 race, instead transferring $18 million of his own money to the Democratic National Committee. His campaign staff is now being encouraged to apply for jobs with the party.

Bloomberg suspends presidential campaign, endorses Biden

Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

Michael Bloomberg, who spent hundreds of millions of dollars to self-fund his 2020 presidential run, announced Wednesday that he is suspending his campaign after a poor performance on Super Tuesday and will endorse Joe Biden.

What he's saying: "I’ve always believed that defeating Donald Trump starts with uniting behind the candidate with the best shot to do it. After yesterday’s vote, it is clear that candidate is my friend and a great American, Joe Biden," Bloomberg said in a statement.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Mar 4, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Bloomberg News will return to "normal coverage" of 2020 race after Bloomberg exit

Mike Bloomberg campaigns in Orlando, Florida, on Super Tuesday. Photo: Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images

After Mike Bloomberg dropped his self-funded presidential run on Wednesday, Bloomberg News editor-in-chief John Micklethwait announced that the organization would return to its "normal coverage of the election," reports CNN's Brian Stelter.

Flashback: In November, the outlet said it would "extend its policy of not investigating" Bloomberg, its owner, "to all Democrats running for president in 2020."