Editor’s Note: The following media release and open letter were shared on Tuesday morning by Mijente, a grassroots Latinx political organization that is endorsing Bernie Sanders for president:
NEW YORK — Mike Bloomberg has tried to rewrite his terrible record, courtesy of a nine-figure ad blitz, but a coalition of New Yorkers of color want voters in Super Tuesday states to see the Mike Bloomberg they know before heading to the polls. They collectively penned an open letter to voters in those 14 contests detailing the harm caused by Bloomberg’s 12-year tenure as New York City’s mayor.
The letter was signed by 90 New Yorkers, including eight family members of people killed by the New York Police Department; elected leaders like New York Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, New York City Council Member Antonio Reynoso, New York State Sen. Julia Salazar (NY SD-18); Mijente Campaign Director Priscilla González, Working Families Party Director of Strategy and Partnerships Nelini Stamp; political strategist L Joy Williams, Make the Road New York Executive Director Javier Valdes, past president of Women’s March Tamika Mallory, Communities United for Police Reform Action Fund Director Joo Hyun Kang, Muslim Democratic Club of New York Secretary Mohammad Khan. All signers listed themselves as individuals, independent of their organizational affiliations.
“We could write books that would fill libraries about the harm that Bloomberg caused New Yorkers—harm that has lasting effects to today,” the signers said.
While much of the early news coverage around Bloomberg’s campaign focused on his expansion of the NYPD’s “stop and frisk” and three-decades worth of sexual harassment allegations in the work place, the letter details policies Bloomberg enacted that targeted the Muslim community, public education, the working class and poor in the city.
Before Donald Trump called for a Muslim ban, Bloomberg “instituted a system of mass, warrantless surveillance of Muslim communities in the New York City metro area—a program that led to exactly zero leads and resulted in mass fear, mistrust, and trauma in Muslim communities that continues to this day.”
Additionally, the letter recalls Bloomberg’s failure to support the city’s public schools during his tenure. “As mayor, Bloomberg closed 157 schools in Black and Brown communities, disregarding and dismissing the demands of thousands of Black and Brown parents, students, and families that he invest in and improve those schools rather than closing them. He closed these schools while he diverted tens of millions of dollars annually away from needy public schools in order to fund the 173 privately run charter schools opened under his administration.”
The signers conclude with an urgent warning for Super Tuesday voters: “After four years of Trump, the last thing our country needs is someone who will champion racist and discriminatory policies, exacerbate economic inequality, and undermine democracy with his wealth.”
The full letter is below: