Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, an outspoken advocate for gun control, recently gave $US250,000 to help re-elect a Mississippi Republican with an A+ rating from the NRA.
According to the latest campaign finance filings, Bloomberg gave $US250,000 to Mississippi Conservatives PAC, a group aiming to re-elect veteran Mississippi Senator Thad Cochran, who is in the fight of his political life against his primary rival, Chris McDaniel.
Bloomberg, a billionaire, has contributed heavily to groups pushing for more firearm regulations. In April, Bloomberg launched a $US50-million campaign to counter the NRA. As a result, Bloomberg’s political brand has become synonymous with gun control.
However, Cochran is a gun control opponent with an A+ rating from the NRA who has specifically been branded as a Bloomberg opponent. When the NRA endorsed Cochran for his current campaign in March they specifically thanked him for standing strong against “Michael Bloomberg’s gun control agenda.”
A Bloomberg spokesman declined to comment about the reason for the donation. But Bloomberg has several other causes he has put his financial muscle behind, including immigration reform, where he and Cochran may have more common ground.
McDaniel and his supporters quickly jumped on Bloomberg’s contribution as evidence of Cochran’s insufficient conservative credentials.
“Gun Grabber Michael Bloomberg Spends $US250,000.00 to Get Thad Cochran Re-Elected,” RedState’s Erick Erickson wrote in a blog post blasted out by the McDaniel campaign. “Hey Mississippi. You know Michael Bloomberg right? He’s the guy who wants to take your guns away.”
A Cochran spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but Cochran released a statement disavowing any link between Bloomberg and his campaign.
“Since entering Congress, I have fought against every effort to undermine the rights of law abiding Mississippi gun owners. In every election that I have run, I have proudly been the NRA’s candidate,” said Cochran. “A group that I have no control over solicited money from someone who I fundamentally disagree with on many issues, including his dangerous stance on gun control. I adamantly disagree with Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun agenda. In my campaign, I have never received a contribution from Michael Bloomberg. My opponent has received millions of dollars from DC-based groups that support candidates throughout the country who do not agree with the NRA on our fundamental constitutional rights.”
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