Former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg spent hundreds of millions of dollars on his failed Democratic presidential campaign before dropping out and endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden.
In the process of running for president, he hired a large staff, paying some of them well above average salaries and allegedly promising them employment through November, even if Bloomberg was not the nominee.
In the weeks following Bloomberg dropping out, however, some staffers were abruptly fired and left without promised health insurance benefits — just as COVID-19 was spreading across the United States. So, they're taking action against Bloomberg in two separate lawsuits.
One lawsuit alleges that employees were recruited under false pretenses and not paid adequately for overtime. The second lawsuit addresses the alleged promises of employment through November. From NPR:
"The Bloomberg campaign's hiring managers understood that potential applicants for field staff positions like the plaintiffs would be motivated to work for Mike Bloomberg 2020 because of their interest in working on the general election to defeat Donald Trump," the lawsuit states.
"Accordingly, the Mike Bloomberg 2020 hiring managers expressly promised field staff applicants for Mike Bloomberg 2020 that they would be employed by Mike Bloomberg 2020 to perform work on the primary campaign to elect Michael Bloomberg as the Democratic nominee and election, regardless of whether Bloomberg won the nomination, and stated that the Bloomberg campaign would keep open and financially support its field offices through the general election campaign."
Bloomberg dropped out of the primary after a disappointing Super Tuesday finish and endorsed Biden, who has opened up a potentially insurmountable lead over Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
Bloomberg also made what amounts to an $18 million personal donation to the Democratic National Committee, which was allowable because it came from his campaign committee — which was self-funded. Bloomberg spent nearly $1 billion on his campaign.