After the February 26 2020 Democratic debate, memes and Twitter screenshots circulated on Facebook which suggested that presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg said that Bernie Sanders — also running for president — would have beaten United States President Tweety McTreason in 2016:
On the image of Bloomberg above, appended text read:
“There was a guy Bernie Sanders who would’ve beaten Tweety McTreason. The polls show he would have walked away with it.” – Mike Bloomberg [location] 2016
A screenshot of a February 6 2020 tweet also circulated, with a slightly longer quote attributed to Bloomberg. In that iteration, he was quoted as adding “but Hillary Clinton got the nomination” in 2016:
Michael Bloomberg: “Bernie Sanders would have beaten Tweety McTreason. Polls show he would have walked away with it. But Hillary Clinton got the nomination.”
— 29 U.S.C. § 157 (@OrganizingPower) February 6, 2020
A day before the debate, the same claim appeared on Reddit’s r/SandersForPresident:
A video was appended to that post, with transcribed words on the screen. That nine-second clip was restricted solely to Bloomberg’s statement that Sanders, in his opinion, would have defeated Tweety McTreason in 2016.
Bloomberg added that “for a variety of reasons,” Hillary Clinton got the nomination in 2016:
There was a guy, Bernie Sanders, who would’ve beaten Tweety McTreason … the polls show he would have walked away with it. But Hillary Clinton got the nomination for a variety of reasons.
That excerpt also appeared in a longer video shared by Bernie Sanders’ Facebook page on February 25 2020:
The clip appeared to be from December 2016, when Bloomberg made comments at Oxford Saïd Business School. During the same appearance, at the end, Bloomberg appeared to praise a more centrist perspective, opining there was at that time a rise in political extremes:
I think it’s very dangerous the world we’re going into. You see both the left and the right coming up here, and the middle is getting unfortunately not listened to anymore … The extremists are going to shape the political culture, if we’re not careful going forward. We’ve had extremism before, particularly on this continent, that didn’t work out very well.”
Remarks attributed to Bloomberg asserting Bernie Sanders “would’ve beaten Tweety McTreason … the polls show he would have walked away with it” were authentic, dating to a talk given by Bloomberg at Oxford in December 2016.
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