On January 23rd, San Francisco Mayor London Breed threw her support behind former Mayor Michael Bloomberg and endorsed him for the Democratic Presidential nomination.
“He has the ability to beat Donald Trump this November, and that is of the most concern to me,” said Breed last month a a press conference. “If there was someone else who could beat Trump, I would be supporting them.”
In an NPR interview, Mayor Breed explained her decision in more detail.
“He has really since leaving the office as mayor – has spent a lot of his personal time focusing on transforming and supporting cities,” explained Breed. “And I think that says a lot about who he is as a person. He cares about people. He cares about a number of initiatives around climate change, which I truly appreciate as someone who’s been pushing local policies here in San Francisco. He has pushed against the tobacco companies that target young people – just a number of things that oftentimes aren’t necessarily the most popular and things that you can’t always see but are necessary for the health and well-being of the future of our country.”
Mayor Breed’s support followed months of speculation on who she would support, a list that included Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and former Vice President Joe Biden.
A key factor in her decision comes from Bloomberg’s continual investment in city measures that Breed also supported. In the last few years Bloomberg has given $7.1 million to beat a reversal ban on e-cigarettes in San Francisco, as well as $275,000 to support a soda tax in the city.
Her support announcement was especially surprising to many, as Bloomberg has had a very controversial record on race and LGBT issues – two issues very important to San Francisco residents. Specifically, Bloomberg’s ‘Stop-and-Frisk’ program in New York, which which gave the NYPD the right to stop, question, detain, and search anyone, most often minorities. The program had long been accused of racial profiling many minorities in the city. Bloomberg also sued to deny domestic partner benefits and tried to reverse the legalization of gay marriage in New York in the 2000’s.
Despite calls by major papers and the powerful Alice B. Toklas and Harvey Milk Democratic clubs for Breed to withdraw her support of Bloomberg, Breed has stayed behind Bloomberg for the California nomination and has shown no sign on deviating on that before the primary and has even defended him on his past decisions.
California’s Primary is March 3, 2020.
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