- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Wednesday called on attendees at the NAACP’s annual convention to “demand more” of the 2020 presidential contenders on the issue of education, saying the political discussion on the issue has shifted from when President Barack Obama was leading it.

“Today, most Democrats running for president are avoiding talking about President Obama, and they’re also avoiding talking about charter schools or actually imposing them,” Mr. Bloomberg said at the group’s convention in Detroit. “They want to take options away from our kids, and I don’t think we should do that. You can’t let them do that.”

While Mr. Obama was a proponent of charter schools, 2020 candidates such as Sen. Bernard Sanders of Vermont have called for an end to for-profit charter schools.

“So when you hear a candidate talk about education as a civil rights issue, ask yourself, are they speaking hard truths like President Obama did or just politically convenient truths like increasing spending?” Mr. Bloomberg said.

He urged attendees not to let the presidential candidates speaking at the event on Wednesday to make “big promises” without explaining how to pay for them or how they would work.



“That’s all bull,” he said. “People say automatically raising achievement levels can’t be done — we’ve shown in New York they can. That’s just total bull-[expletive] and you shouldn’t stand for it. And every place in America can do that for every group.”

Still, Mr. Bloomberg — who has flirted with presidential runs in the past — said any of the candidates would be better than President Trump.

“Granted, that’s a low bar,” the former mayor said.

The Democrat-turned-Republican-turned-independent officially re-registered as a Democrat ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

“In the last election, I spent more than $100 million to help elect Democrats to the House of Representatives,” he said. “I did it because I knew we needed a Congress to act as a check on this president, and the Republicans sure weren’t providing that oversight.”

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