Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott has endorsed Mike Bloomberg for president and been named co-chair of the Mike for Black America National Leadership Council, along with San Francisco Mayor London Breed.
“After much deliberation and prayer, I decided to endorse Mike Bloomberg for president,” Scott said in a statement. “Though many candidates offer good solutions for our country, Mike has a proven track record as a successful businessman and mayor solving problems through collaboration and effective policy. Mike and I do not agree on everything, but I am confident he is committed to righting wrongs, stimulating our economy, and bringing people together – important leadership principles that I strive to fulfill daily for the residents of Little Rock. While much focus is on the Iowa and New Hampshire primaries, Mike made Little Rock and numerous overlooked cities in the South a priority. The emphasis on Little Rock and Mike’s executive experience leading America’s largest city make him well-suited for the job.”
Not “agreeing on everything” might be an acknowledgment of Bloomberg’s long support for the New York Police Department’s stop-and-frisk policy, which disproportionately targeted black and Latino people. Bloomberg continued to defend the practice, despite there being no evidence that it contributed to a drop in crime until it became politically expedient to apologize as his campaign was launching. UPDATE: And today a 2015 audio clip of him defending the policy in striking terms has been making the rounds.The Appeal has gathered other examples of a troublesome criminal justice record.
Bloomberg has been racking up endorsements from mayors across the country. Scott, in a lot of ways, has moderate political views. I’m sure he and the centrist Bloomberg agree on a lot. But surely there’s some political pragmatism at play as well. Bloomberg is one of the richest people in the world and has long been philanthropically active. Little Rock could use some dough.
“With his experience in the private sector and in government, Mayor Scott knows how to build coalitions and get big things done,” Bloomberg said in the statement announcing Scott’s support. “We share a belief in opportunity for all – in coming together to create more good jobs, with good salaries, all across Little Rock, all across Arkansas, and all across America. I’m honored to have his support and excited to welcome him as a Co-Chair for the Mike for Black America National Leadership Council.”