Mike Bloomberg appeared to say he 'bought' 21 Democrats their seats in Congress in a cringeworthy debate gaffe

Bloomberg

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Mike Bloomberg at the tenth Democratic debate in Charleston, South Carolina, on February 25, 2020.

  • In an apparent verbal slip, Mike Bloomberg seemed to say during the Democratic presidential debate Tuesday that he "bought" 21 Democrats their congressional seats. 
  • "All of the new Democrats that came in, put Nancy Pelosi in charge, and gave the Congress the ability to control this president, I bough-I got them," said Bloomberg. 
  • Bloomberg has attracted criticism from rivals for the way he has used his vast personal fortune to augment his campaign. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

In a cringeworthy slip of the tongue, Mike Bloomberg at the Democratic debate in South Carolina on Tuesday almost said that he "bought" 21 congressional Democrats their seats in the 2018 mid-term elections. 

"Let's just go on the record, they talk about 40 Democrats," Bloomberg said, referring to presidential rival Joe Biden, who previously boasted of his work helping secure victories for House Democrats in the mid0-terms.Advertisement

"21 of those were people that I spent $100 million to help elect. All of the new Democrats that came in, put Nancy Pelosi in charge, and gave the Congress the ability to control this president, I bough - I got them."

His remark will do nothing to quell criticism from Democratic rivals of his use of his vast personal fortune to gain political influence.

Sen. Bernie Sanders claimed in January that Bloomberg was trying to "buy" the Democratic nomination.
Advertisement

The billionaire financier and former New York City mayor has spent hundreds of millions of dollars of his own money on ads advocating his candidacy.

He leap-frogging rivals in polls despite only entering the race last November, after many had already been campaigning for months. The moment came during a part of the debate where several of the remaining candidates were focussing their attacks on progressive Bernie Sanders.Advertisement

The argued that if he wins the nomination it could cost Democrats the chance to control of both houses of Congress in November's presidential election. 

Critics were quick to pounce on Bloomberg's slip, among them Donald Trump Jr., President Donald Trump's eldest son, who frequently trolls his father's critics on social media. 

 Advertisement

{{}}