Super Tuesday marks the first 2020 electoral test for Michael Bloomberg, whom voters around the country are getting to know through his debate appearances and avalanche of television advertising.
New Yorkers, of course, are already familiar with the billionaire media titan, whom they elected to the mayoralty three times.
The former mayor has his share of admirers, like New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, and a massive list of endorsements: former Mayor David Dinkins, actor Michael Douglas, even Samoan Chief Fa’alagiga Nina Tua’au-Glaude. In a poll taken a few weeks after he left City Hall in 2014, Quinnipiac found that nearly two thirds of voters—including most Democrats—believed his dozen years in office were “mainly a success.”
The same survey, however, found that most respondents did not feel Bloomberg had made their lives better. Critics of the mayor say that dichotomy reflects the Bloomberg mythology: he convinced everyone that the city was improving, without actually improving it for the majority of people living there.
One of the leading critics of the mayor during his tenure was Juan Gonzalez—author, co-host of “Democracy Now!” and a leading New York City columnist during the Bloomberg era.
As part of Pacifica’s Super Tuesday coverage on WBAI (home of the weekly Max & Murphy Show) we spoke to Juan on Friday about what lessons he hopes primary voters will learn before deciding on whether to support the mayor’s 2020 bid.