De Blasio Says Bloomberg Came Across As 'Arrogant Billionaire' At Debate

Rich Lamb
February 20, 2020 - 4:11 pm
Bill de Blasio

Photo by Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — Once among the candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination, Mayor Bill de Blasio shared his thoughts on the debate performance of his former rivals.

De Blasio called the heated debate held Wednesday night in Nevada "a very good one," saying of its robust exchanges, "The people deserve to hear their potential president put through the paces."

The Democrat, who last week endorsed Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, believes the conventional wisdom is wrong that a contentious primary hurts the party.

He said more often than not in history the strongly fought primary energized each candidates' base and then that was brought into the general election by and large.

"And, the people were vetted intensely before they went up against their ultimate opponent from the other party," he added. "Let's make sure the candidate is battle-tested now."

Mike Bloomberg, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders
Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images

De Blasio also weighed in on the performance by his predecessor Mike Bloomberg, who appeared on the debate stage for the first time.

"I think he came across as an arrogant billionaire, which I think is accurate," de Blasio said. "I was astounded, as someone who has done a lot of debate prep in my life, he made no attempt whatsoever to mask a worldview, not just a personality, a worldview that I think is really troubling to a lot of working people."

Bloomberg came under attack early and often at the debate, with Elizabeth Warren landing the first punch.

"I'd like to talk about who we're running against: a billionaire who calls women 'fat broads' and 'horse-faced lesbians.' And no, I'm not talking about Donald Trump, I'm talking about Mayor Bloomberg," Warren said.

Bloomberg also faced questions about the corporate culture at his company, his stop-and-frisk policy and his campaign spending. 

The former mayor did land a few punches on Sanders, saying "What a wonderful country we have. The best known socialist in the country happens to be a millionaire with three houses. What did I miss here?”

And Bloomberg's campaign manager Kevin Sheekey, put some spin on the night saying, "You know you are a winner when you are drawing attacks from all the candidates."

The White House candidates did save some verbal ammo for each other, including Pete Buttigieg taking on Amy Klobuchar after she drew a blank in a recent interview on the name of Mexico's president.