Mayor Bloomberg, a billionaire who fully bankrolled his two campaigns, spoke out today against the flow of money from the real estate industry into politicians’ campaign accounts.
Responding to a question on campaign finance, he told reporters that he thinks it’s “a disgrace” that some real estate developers are giving to all the viable candidates, as “pay to play” is too prevalent in the city.
For more on this, we did a story a couple weeks back on how the practice is heating up for the 2009 race, as did the Times.
You can watch video of the mayor’s response above (courtesy of Azi Paybarah at our brother blog The Politicker), or read the full text right here:
"In this country, in the state and in the city, there is too much of a pay to play ethic. You see it in this city where a number of the real estate developers are giving money to all the potential candidates for mayor down the road—they’re not doing that because they think they’ll get good government from one versus the other. They’re just doing it because, I would assume, the think they’ll have influence. Now we have passed some laws which will limit that, and the laws haven’t quiet kicked in yet, and that is arguably one of the reasons they’re rushing to do it now. I happen to think that’s a disgrace, and I think you see that on the state level and on the federal level—you see people giving fundraisers for candidates on both sides of the aisle—anybody that looks like they’re going to win. There’s only one reason people do that and that’s to get influence. And that kind of culture is not good democracy.”
Follow Eliot Brown via RSS.