Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg donated $250,000 to the pro-Thad Cochran super PAC “Mississippi Conservatives” in late May, Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings the organization provided show.
Bloomberg’s donation to the Super PAC supporting Cochran could end up becoming a kiss of death for Cochran in the heated runoff against conservative state Sen. Chris McDaniel, who bested Cochran in the popular vote in the primary a little over a week ago, forcing a runoff a week from Tuesday.
Bloomberg supports gun control–something Cochran says he’s against.
“This is not a battle of dollars, this is a battle for the hearts and minds of America so that we can protect our children, protect innocent people,” Bloomberg said in a recent television interview about his renewed fight against the National Rifle Association.
“We’re the only civilized country in the world that has this problem,” Bloomberg added, while highlighting gun-related deaths in the country.
While the NRA has interestingly enough also thrown its weight–with Bloomberg–behind Cochran, pro-2nd Amendment groups like National Association of Gun Rights and Gun Owners of America have endorsed McDaniel.
But at the recent NRA convention in April, NRA chief lobbyist Chris Cox attacked Bloomberg as if speaking directly to him: “Stay out of our homes, stay out of our gun cabinets… because this freedom is not for sale.”
“Mr. Bloomberg, you are an arrogant hypocrite,” Cox said.
Another of Bloomberg’s lobbying outfits–the Partnership for a New American Economy–is pushing comprehensive immigration reform. Support for amnesty was the driving force behind the crumbling of another GOP establishment titan, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, this week–where conservative challenger Dave Brat hammered Cantor on the issue day in and day out.
Cochran has cast several votes in Congress in favor of amnesty, weakened border security, and a massive increase in legal immigration. And while he voted against the “Gang of Eight” immigration bill last year at final passage, he didn’t say anything about it until months after it was introduced.
McDaniel, on the other hand, has come out swinging against amnesty–signing the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) pledge against it and against a massive increase in legal immigration. McDaniel has also called out Cochran for remaining silent on the efforts by Senate Democrats and President Obama’s administration to use America’s military as a tool to grant amnesty to illegal alien minors. After plans–pushed heavily by Cantor–to use the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to grant amnesty to illegal alien minors, or DREAMers, who enlist in the military fell apart, Sen. Dick Durbin sought to enact similar plans through the Senate Appropriations Defense subcommittee. Cochran is the ranking member of that Committee but hasn’t said anything to respond to or fight back against Durbin’s push–which includes a call from Durbin on Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to administratively implement such a plan without Congress’ approval if conservatives successfully block the effort again.
Bloomberg is also pro-abortion, something that could swing many Mississippi voters McDaniel’s way as Mississippi is a very pro-life state working to shutter its only functioning abortion clinic. “The two parties’ nominees for president offer different visions of where they want to lead America,” Bloomberg said when he endorsed Barack Obama’s re-election campaign. “One believes a woman’s right to choose should be protected for future generations; one does not. That difference, given the likelihood of Supreme Court vacancies, weighs heavily on my decision.”
Bloomberg is so pro-abortion that he actually criticized Sen. Chuck Schumer for not being pro-choice enough when Schumer backed pro-life Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA) in order to beat the strongly pro-life now former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA). Santorum–a 2012 GOP presidential candidate whose conservative views led him to win Mississippi in the primary over Mitt Romney–has endorsed McDaniel over his former colleague Cochran.
While the National Right-to-Life Committee has endorsed Cochran, McDaniel serves as pro bono counsel for Pro Life Mississippi–a state-based pro-life group.
To top it off, Bloomberg also supports Common Core–something Cochran now claims he’s against but in 2010 offered public support for in a letter to Education Secretary Arne Duncan.
“We have to make sure that we give our kids constantly the opportunity to move towards the major leagues,” Bloomberg said in comments in which he praised Common Core.
Bloomberg’s money for Cochran is going into the Super PAC that high-profile conservative attorney Cleta Mitchell–of the American Conservative Union and Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund–says received an illegal bank loan from Trustmark National Bank. Mitchell has filed an FEC complaint against Mississippi Conservatives, which is run by former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour’s nephew, Henry Barbour.
Ironically enough, Henry and Haley Barbour–and many other Cochran supporters–argued that Tea Party and conservative groups which have spent millions backing McDaniel’s candidacy but are now taking money from one of the most liberal elites in America to push for Cochran in the primary and now runoff.