One of the fiery moments from last night’s debate on CBS News was when Elizabeth Warren challenging Michael Bloomberg over an old lawsuit where he allegedly told a newly-pregnant employee to “kill it” rather than giver birth:
Elizabeth Warren just accused Michael Bloomberg of telling a female employee “kill it” in response to that employee getting pregnant.
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) February 26, 2020
Bloomberg denied he ever said it. Via Axios:
“Categorically never said it. When I was accused of doing it, we couldn’t figure out what she was talking about. But right now, I’m sorry if she heard what she thought she heard or whatever happened, I didn’t take any pleasure in that,” Bloomberg stated.
Elizabeth Warren blasts Mike Bloomberg for telling a pregnant employee to “kill it.”
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) February 26, 2020
Now, here’s the odd part. Everyone is treating this as a he-said, she-said, but there’s an on-the-record witness that backs up the woman’s story:
Gayle King asked Warren for evidence that Bloomberg told a pregnant woman to “kill it.” Not only was that the woman’s testimony, a third party witness — the kind Bloomberg said in a deposition he required for an assault claim — backed it up to Wapo https://t.co/v9f9qT82Rw pic.twitter.com/KgigO7KoZr
— Irin Carmon (@irin) February 26, 2020
From the Washington Post:
Bloomberg denies that he said "kill it" to a pregnant employee but the Washington Post interviewed another employee who said he witnessed it https://t.co/I6Bs3jOWUz
— Arthur Delaney (@ArthurDelaneyHP) February 26, 2020
The most high-profile case was from a former saleswoman. She sued Bloomberg personally as well as his company, alleging workplace discrimination. She alleged Bloomberg told her to “kill it” when he learned she was pregnant. Bloomberg has denied her allegation under oath, and he reached a confidential settlement with the saleswoman.
The Washington Post interviewed a former Bloomberg employee, David Zielenziger, who said he witnessed the conversation with the saleswoman. Zielenziger, who said he had not previously spoken publicly about the matter, said Bloomberg’s behavior toward the woman was “outrageous. I understood why she took offense.”
And from the complaint:
89. On April 11, 1995 at approximately 11:20 a.m., Bloomberg was having a photograph taken with two female Company salespeople and a group of N.Y.U. Business School students, in the company snack area. When Bloomberg noticed Garrison standing nearby, he asked, “Why didn’t they ask you to be in the picture? I guess they saw your face.” Continuing his penchant for ridiculing recently married women in his employ, Bloomberg asked plaintiff, “How’s married life? You married?” Plaintiff responded that her marriage was great and was going to get better in a few months: that she was pregnant, and the baby was due the following September. He responded to her “Kill it!” Plaintiff asked Bloomberg to repeat himself, and again he said, “Kill it!” and muttered, “Great! Number 16!” suggesting to plaintiff his unhappiness that sixteen women in the Company had maternity-related status. Then he walked away.
It seems that Elizabeth Warren herself is not aware of the witness and keeps saying we should just believe the woman:
Fave moment from #DemDebate: #Warren: At least I didn't have a boss who said to me 'kill it' the way that Mayor Bloomberg alleged to have said to one of his pregnant employees.@GayleKing: What evidence do you have of that?
Warren: Her own word.
— heaven (@genetgetsfree) February 26, 2020
The always-awful Chris Matthews doesn’t know about the witness as well:
Chris Matthews asks Elizabeth Warren why she believes a female employee who sued Mike Bloomberg for telling her "kill it" when she was pregnant over Bloomberg.
"You believe he's lying? …Why would he lie? Just to protect himself? …You’re confident of your accusation?" pic.twitter.com/hVkkQhhXtz
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) February 26, 2020
Anyway, if Bloomberg thinks this will go away now just because the journos (and Warren!) are clueless, he’s sadly mistaken.