New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg speaks at the annual Transforming Transportation conference at the World Bank in Washington,DC on January 18, 2013. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been lauded by many in recent weeks for his support of strict gun control measures in New York. In a profile of his potential successor City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, New York Magazine's Jonathan Van Meter related a number of startling comments by the prestigious billionaire.
"Look at the a** on her," the mayor allegedly said of a woman in a tight dress, paying little attention to the thanks he had just received for his efforts to limit gun access.
Here's the full context, via New York Magazine (profanity warning):
As it happens, I was at a Christmas party for the rich just a few weeks ago. It was at a townhouse in the East Sixties, just off Park Avenue, and several times over the course of the evening the subject of Quinn came up. Each person I spoke with expressed doubts about whether she’s tough enough and smart enough to run the city. Implied, or overtly stated, was that the Bloomberg years have been marvelous and she’s no Bloomberg. By which they meant, if I understood correctly, that’s she’s just another politician. Later in the evening, the host interrupted me to point out that the mayor himself had just arrived. Did I want to meet him? Sure. My friend and I followed the host over, shook Bloomberg’s hand, and my friend thanked him for his position on gun control. Without even acknowledging the comment, Bloomberg gestured toward a woman in a very tight floor-length gown standing nearby and said, “Look at the ass on her.” [Emphasis added]
Bloomberg has also doled out harsh words on Quinn's appearance, apparently:
...Then [Quinn] said, “The mayor is going to yell at me when I get out of the car because I have flat boots on. The mayor has no use for flat shoes.” Really, I said. Why would he care? “I was at a parade with him once and he said, ‘What are those?’ and I said, ‘They’re comfortable,’ and he said, ‘I never want to hear those words out of your mouth again.’ ” Everyone in the vehicle, including the security detail in the front seat, cracked up. “He likes me in high heels. Let’s see how long it takes before he notices.” She scrolled through her BlackBerry. “Another big thing with the mayor, when I am rooting … like, the couple of days a week before I need to get my hair colored, he’ll say, ‘Do you pay a lot to make your hair be two colors? Because now it’s three with the gray.’ And I’m like, ‘Did you wake up being this big of an asshole? Or did it take, like, all day to ramp up to it to be able to insult me like that?’" [Emphasis added]
But Quinn somewhat excuses the behavior later in the New York Magazine article, explaining: "He’s actually much more silly than people think. Sometimes in meetings he’s just telling stories and goofing around. And he’s got a potty mouth.”
Bloomberg's comments are just starting to gain traction in the media, but it will be interesting to see whether the same outlets that were horrified by Rush Limbaugh calling Sandra Fluke a "slut" over her requests for taxpayer subsidized birth control, or incredulous over Mitt Romney's "binders full of women" remark, show the slightest indignation over Bloomberg's apparent objectification of women.
"Billionaires will be billionaires," Gawker concludes.