New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg has pledged to be a "counterweight" to the National Rifle Association. Bloomberg's net worth is estimated at $22 billion.
Of the NRA, Bloomberg says, “I’m going to prove a counterweight.” And he has, to a certain degree, put some money where his mouth his. Bloomberg "spent about $10 million in five congressional and statewide races against NRA-supported candidates last year, winning four of those contests," the Washington Post reports.
And Bloomberg believes his money has been well spent. “It seemed effective, and I’m certainly going to take a good, hard look at next time. . . . You can organize people, I can write checks.”
Last week, an MSNBC host challenged Bloomberg to spend all his money to push for gun control:
"OK, so I have a question for you Mr. Mayor about how to lead on this," said host Mika Brzezinski. "Joe Nocera, in his [New York Times] piece, he basically says when you leave office if you really care about guns, put all your money where your mouth is."
"Well, I've got 356 days left with this job," Bloomberg said, referring to the final year of his term as mayor.
"What are you going to do with your money when it comes to guns?" Brzezinski interrupted. "Let's do it. Let's start a movement."
"Well, I've said it's all going to be given away," Bloomberg, who is 70 and said to be worth $22 billion, started.
"Because you know what makes a difference in politics--money," Brzezinski insisted.
"Time out ... I've already given away $350 million," Bloomberg said amid crosstalk. "What do you want me to do?"
Bloomberg did not seem to take the bait, yet he didn't rule out putting all $22 billion behind gun control, either.