Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer on Tuesday condemned a 2015 audio recording of fellow billionaire Mike Bloomberg's defense of the controversial stop-and-frisk policing tactic used during his time as New York City mayor, calling the practice "extremely disturbing". But Bloomberg didn't just inherit stop-and-frisk. To combat crime, he said, "put a lot of cops where the crime is, which means in minority neighborhoods".
In the audio, he acknowledges that focusing police forces in minority neighbourhoods means minorities are disproportionately arrested for cannabis possession, but dismisses that as a necessary effect of the crime in those neighbourhoods. "If he doesn't mention you, you've got a big problem".
"And they say, 'Oh, I don't want that, I don't wanna get caught.' So they don't bring the gun", he says. He continues, "They are male minorities, 15 to 25".
Bloomberg had video of speech blocked.
Trump latched onto recently released audio from 2015 of Bloomberg defending stop-and-frisk police policy, declaring on Twitter "WOW, BLOOMBERG IS A TOTAL RACIST!" despite supporting the policy himself.
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The stop-and-frisk policy has since been modified, substantially reducing its use by police, after Bloomberg lost a re-election bid in 2013. He said: "I should have done it faster and sooner".
The new space at 535 Atlantic Ave. will be open daily and will focus on connecting Bloomberg's "extensive network of supporters and allies" in the borough, according to his campaign team. During his tenure, use of the practice increased sevenfold.
In another tweet, the president offered something of a backhanded compliment to Bloomberg, writing that he could beat Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. Both have received a number of prominent African American endorsements and have been holding campaign events specifically aimed at the black community.
Trump has repeatedly mocked Bloomberg's height and refers to him as "Mini Mike".
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"And, you know, it's just not the way that I think, and it doesn't reflect what I do every day".
Campaign chair Michael Nutter acknowledged that Bloomberg may face more scrutiny over his record as mayor, but framed it as a byproduct of his strong record of getting things done.
The pro-Trump effort said it has gained more than 1 million new digital and direct mail donors since Democrats launched their push to impeach Trump in September 2019.
Trump marked the fundraising success Thursday with his inaugural visit to his campaign headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, to thank staffers on his campaign.
Campaign spokesman Stu Loeser said Bloomberg "attacked predatory lending" as mayor and, if elected president, has a plan to "help a million more black families buy a house, and counteract the effects of redlining and the subprime mortgage crisis". Ahead of the Super Bowl, he also upped his search advertising so that when folks Googled key phrases like "Trump's Super Bowl ad", they were served Bloomberg's.
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