Bloomberg Tried to Be Trump Last Night

Image Credit: By Midtown Comics (Midtown Comics)[CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

I was right about the first prediction, I was wrong about the second.

Bloomberg was indeed the center of a lot of the attacks brought on by his fellow Democrats last night, but oddly enough, he didn’t seem at all prepared for them. That’s odd, seeing as how a lot of his dirty laundry has been airing out in the public square as the Nevada debate approached. You’d think he would have come up with some lines to use in his defense, but as the hits came, Bloomberg seemed dazed.

Especially after this zinger from Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who called out Bloomberg’s inappropriate behavior around women and the subsequent gag orders that resulted.

Perhaps Bloomberg thought that any insults thrown his way would roll off like water on a duck’s back. Perhaps he was convinced that his casually tossed out excuses would take with the audience. As you can hear in the clip, it clearly didn’t. Social media concurred. It was a heavy hit.

It’s a situation that Donald Trump found himself in once. His opponents confronted him about it as well. He had no real excuse for it and didn’t seem interested in answering for it either. The difference is, it didn’t seem to really affect him.

Trump and Bloomberg have a lot in common. Both are New York moguls with a history of shady moments and inappropriate behavior. It’s possible that Bloomberg thought that his situation was going to end up just like Trump’s, with almost no blowback that would affect the chances of a victory.

Only it didn’t. The #MeToo movement was a movement supported primarily by the left. Its consistent focus on identity made it a big part of the left’s platform, albeit unofficially. Bloomberg’s troubles with women were always going to hit him harder than Trump’s.

Perhaps it was a gamble Bloomberg was willing to take, but even political gambles require an element of calculation. Bloomberg didn’t seem to do any before he dove into the water with all the sharks.

The one thing that Bloomberg did do like Trump, however, was focus strikes at the weak points of his opponents. As I wrote earlier today, Bloomberg’s strike on Sanders was masterful and one of the few things that went Bloomberg’s way in Nevada.

(READ: Nevada’s Debate Showed That a Bernie Can Bleed)

If I didn’t know any better, I would say that the Democrats were afraid to attack Sanders for what they know is obvious hypocrisy when it comes to his socialist beliefs. This may be because they’re all mired in hypocrisy of their own. Warren’s falsehoods about her Native American blood claims haven’t seen the light of day either.

But Bloomberg didn’t want to abide by whatever pre-fight agreement the other candidates were operating by. Bloomberg went for Sanders’ jugular and bit down hard. He drew a lot of blood that Sanders fans are going to pretend isn’t pooling around their feet, but everyone else sees it. The internet sure saw it. I’m pretty damn sure that Trump saw it, too.

I’m willing to bet all the money I have that Trump had the attack on Sanders’ hypocrisy in his back pocket, ready to unleash if and when Sanders met him on the general election stage.

What’s more, I think Bloomberg did it because that’s something Trump would do. The all-out aggression in a ring where people are trying to play nice is textbook Trump.

If you ask me, Bloomberg is trying to follow what was a path of clear success for another man, but there are a multitude of problems for Bloomberg. For one, Bloomberg is trying to seduce a hostile crowd who hate him for his success. Trump was playing to a crowd that loved him for it. Bloomberg is trying to bring a sense of confidence and aggression, but he’s not confident and that makes his teeth seem a little less sharp.

If Bloomberg is smart, he’d stop trying to be so much like Trump and change his battle plan before it’s too late. It may already be too late, but better late than never. If he can go after the rest as he went after Sanders, he may stand a chance.

Brandon Morse
Senior Editor. Culture critic, and video creator. Good at bad photoshops.
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