Mayor Michael Bloomberg recently launched a “super PAC,” loaded with at least $10 million of his own money, to influence this year’s elections, but in an interview this morning, the mayor said he was just dipping his toes in the water and plans to do even more electoral engineering after he’s term-limited out in 2013.
“We’ll win some races, we’ll lose some of these, but it’s sort of to get our feet wet,” Mr. Bloomberg said during his weekly appearance on John Gambling’s radio show. “Two years from now, when I don’t have to worry about just what’s good for New York City–I’m going to live here for the rest of my life, my kids are going to live here, I’m going to live in New York State, I’m going to live in America, so I care about all of these levels of government–I’ll be freer to do more.”
Discussing his motivation for the move, Mr. Bloomberg said he’s “complained about this partisanship and lack of cooperation” in Washington, and he finally decided to step up and try to fix things.
“I don’t respect people who complain and don’t try and do something about it,” he said. “Just complaining is not something I think is very productive, so I’m going to try and support candidates–and you can do it with $1, or $10, or voting–but I want to support candidates who believe as I do. Marriage equality and common-sense gun laws and educational reform, people who can work across the aisle.”
As to how he feels about this sort of outside spending in general, the billionaire mayor said he’s fine with it as long as all of the money is publicly disclosed.
“I don’t have a problem with people getting together to support a candidate,” he explained, “if you want to give your money and hire people to do these things, or pay for ads, as long as it’s disclosed. I think it should be disclosed at the city level, I think it should be disclosed at the state level and at the federal level, because you have a right to know who’s trying to influence the Legislature.”