Vice President Mike Pence dealt a pointed rebuke to 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg on Monday.
The ordinarily mild-mannered vice president tweeted out Ram Trucks’ 2013 Super Bowl ad extolling farming in response to Bloomberg’s 2016 remarks that farming doesn’t require “much gray matter” or skill. The billionaire has taken criticism from all sides over the comments, just the latest controversial remarks to resurface from his past in recent days.
“So God Made a Farmer,” Pence wrote, quoting the ad. Watch the video below:
So God Made a Farmer 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/sbXSugMNyO
— Mike Pence (@Mike_Pence) February 17, 2020
Pence slams Bloomberg
Bloomberg’s campaign has taken steady hits from Team Trump and Democratic rivals in recent days, as comments from his past on stop-and-frisk, redlining and other controversies have resurfaced. The latest batch of comments added fresh fuel to bi-partisan criticism that Bloomberg, who progressives have accused of trying to “buy” the election, is arrogant and out of touch with working people.
Speaking at Oxford University in 2016, Bloomberg derided farming and industrial labor as rudimentary work that anyone can learn, the New York Post reported. The New York billionaire, who has never farmed, suggested that the jobs of the future will require “a lot more gray matter” and gave his idea of what farming entails.
“I could teach anybody, even people in this room, no offense intended, to be a farmer,” Bloomberg told the audience at the Distinguished Speakers Series at the University of Oxford Saïd Business School. “It’s a process. You dig a hole, you put a seed in, you put dirt on top, add water, up comes the corn. Then we had 300 years of the industrial society. You put the piece of metal on the lathe, you turn the crank in the direction of the arrow, and you can have a job.”
The ordinarily reticent Pence joined the chorus of critics who slammed Bloomberg’s remarks, sharing a 2013 commercial that interpolates a recording of broadcaster Paul Harvey reading his 1978 speech, “So God Made a Farmer,” about the hardships and virtues of the vocation. Harvey’s speech, which he gave at the Future Farmers of America convention, reads in part:
It had to be somebody who’d plow deep and straight…and not cut corners. Somebody to seed and weed, feed and breed…and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk. Somebody to replenish the self feeder and then finish a hard days work with a five mile drive to church. Somebody who’d bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who’d laugh and then sigh…and then respond with smiling eyes, when his son says he wants to spend his life “doing what dad does”. So, God made a farmer!
Bloomberg rocked by past comments
Bloomberg blamed the Trump campaign and supporters of Bernie Sanders (I-VT) for sharing the “out of context” video, but it’s not just a lack of context that is troubling Bloomberg’s campaign. The billionaire has been on an apology tour to recant his past defenses of New York City’s stop-and-frisk policy, which critics charge is racist towards blacks and Hispanics, and he has also taken fire for blaming the financial crisis of 2008 on the end of redlining, a policy in which banks refused to offer mortgages to people in poor black communities.
Despite the criticism, Bloomberg has been rising in the polls amid an advertising blitz that has seen the billionaire pour millions into advertising in Super Tuesday states. Bloomberg is skipping the early primary contests to focus on Super Tuesday and other delegate-rich contests after March 3.
Bloomberg has qualified for Wednesday night’s debate after surging in a new poll, which placed him in second nationally with 19 percent support, and he will appear on the debate stage. He is not on the ballot in the state’s caucuses Saturday.
Billionaire despises workers
President Donald Trump has attacked Bloomberg in more blunt terms than Pence, focusing on his stature with the epithet “Mini Mike” and suggesting that Bloomberg would ask for a box to stand on in the debates. Pence is more low-key, but his message to Bloomberg is pretty clear.
If Bloomberg wants to win back swing voters from Trump, he can start by not showering contempt on the people he wants to govern. But he’s such an obvious phony, it’s a wonder if he can even manage that.