Michael Bloomberg is not just using his massive $60 billion fortune to blanket the airwaves with 2020 ads, he’s using it to lure staff to his Democratic presidential campaign by offering lavish perks.
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The former New York City mayor is paying state press secretaries $10,000 a month, compared to the going rate of $4,500 for other candidates, according to the New York Post, citing sources. Meanwhile, state political directors are earning $12,000 a month, more than some senior campaign advisers make.
Bloomberg’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Carlos Sanchez, the campaign’s national political director, is nabbing $360,000 a year, surpassing the salary of Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump, who made $183,000 in 2019, according to the White House’s annual salary report published in June.
The Post reported that every Bloomberg staffer receives a MacBook Pro and an iPhone 11 and enjoys three catered meals daily.
“We’ve put together an amazingly strong team that every day is getting closer to beating Donald Trump, and we are happy to pay staff well to do that,” Bloomberg spokesperson Stu Loeser told the Post.
Already, Bloomberg has surpassed $225 million in spending on 2020 ads, according to ad-tracking firm Advertising Analytics, a large swath of which are being aired in Super Tuesday states. In a recent New York Times report, Bloomberg did not rule out the possibility that he’ll spend $1 billion on the election.
Bloomberg is not participating in the Iowa caucuses and won't be on the ballots of other early-voting states, including New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada, instead concentrating his vast, $60 billion fortune on states that vote on March 3, when a whopping 1,357 Democratic delegates will be awarded.
He’s also not accepting donations, meaning he is unable to appear in the debates due to the Democratic National Committee's qualifying rules, which require a candidate to ascertain a number of individual campaign donors.
Bloomberg's billions have fueled a massive hiring frenzy of 1,000 staffers, including Cassandra Henry, who’s serving as Bloomberg’s deputy national states director. She previously worked for Texas. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who dropped out of the primary at the beginning of November.
The 77-year-old also snatched Kelly Mehlenbacher, who had worked in operations for California Sen. Kamala Harris’s campaign, days before Harris suspended her presidential bid, citing a lack of financial resources.