Former New York mayor and Democratic presidential hopeful Michael Bloomberg has long been a vocal critic of the National Rifle Association, which he has called both “shameful” and “dangerous.” That makes recently unearthed videos in which he compared two important Democratic-aligned groups to the NRA particularly uncomfortable for the 2020 upstart. In a video of remarks Bloomberg made while still mayor of New York, obtained by Politico, he can be heard likening the American Civil Liberties Union and the New York City teachers union to the NRA. Referring to leadership of the United Federation of Teachers, Bloomberg said, “The NRA’s another place where the membership, if you do the polling, doesn't agree with the leadership.” Bloomberg’s spokesman defended the comment to Politico, saying “the reference to the [teachers union] was something Mike said in the heat of the moment that he now regrets.” But Bloomberg didn’t stop there. “We don’t need extremists on the left or the right running our police department, whether it’s the NRA or the NYCLU,” he said in a 2013 speech in which he also defended the city’s controversial stop-and-frisk policy that both groups opposed.
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