Rep. Bobby Rush endorses Bloomberg's White House bid

Rep. Bobby Rush endorses Bloomberg's White House bid
© Greg Nash

Rep. Bobby RushBobby Lee RushHouse passes host of bills to strengthen cybersecurity in wake of attacks OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Democrats lay out vision for Civilian Climate Corps | Manchin to back controversial public lands nominee | White House details environmental justice plan Democrats lay out vision for Civilian Climate Corps MORE (D-Ill.) on Tuesday endorsed former New York City Mayor Michael BloombergMichael BloombergWHO leader issues warning on 'harmful' e-cigarettes Six months in, two challenges could define Biden's presidency Why Democrats' .5 trillion reconciliation bill is a losing game MORE for president, Bloomberg’s campaign announced, becoming the fourth House lawmaker to endorse him.

Rush, who had endorsed Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisHarris's bad polls trigger Democratic worries Why in the world are White House reporters being told to mask up again? Want to improve vaccine rates? Ask for this endorsement MORE (D-Calif.) before her exit from the race early last month, said he had been contacted by former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenFirst lady leaves Walter Reed after foot procedure Biden backs effort to include immigration in budget package MyPillow CEO to pull ads from Fox News MORE and Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenPelosi disputes Biden's power to forgive student loans Warren hits the airwaves for Newsom ahead of recall election Human rights can't be a sacrificial lamb for climate action MORE’s (D-Mass.) campaigns before he decided to endorse Bloomberg.

“He alone, among the current Democratic candidates, has been the clearest, the most focused, and the most reasonable voice for addressing the depressed state of the African-American economy,” Rush said of Bloomberg in a statement. “His Greenwood Initiative is not only inspirational, it's practical and it's doable.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Bloomberg announced the Greenwood Initiative — his plan to address economic disparities among African Americans — on Sunday in Tulsa, Okla., the site of a racist riot in 1921 that destroyed the eponymous black neighborhood, one of the most prosperous African American communities in the U.S. at the time.

The Bloomberg campaign on Tuesday also announced that Rush will serve as its national co-chair.

“Congressman Bobby Rush has dedicated his life to building a more open, inclusive, equitable, just and prosperous America -- as a civil rights activist, pastor, and leader in Congress, where he has been a force for change on issues we both feel passionately about, including health care, gun violence, and poverty," Bloomberg said.

Rush is the first African American House member to endorse Bloomberg, with Reps. Harley RoudaHarley Edwin Rouda'Blue wave' Democrats eye comebacks after losing reelection Former Rep. Rohrabacher says he took part in Jan. 6 march to Capitol but did not storm building Republicans race for distance from 'America First Caucus' MORE (D-Calif.), Stephanie MurphyStephanie MurphyLawmakers can't reconcile weakening the SALT cap with progressive goals Select committee member thanks officers who responded Jan. 6: 'You were our last line of defense' House erupts in anger over Jan. 6 and Trump's role MORE (D-Fla.) and Max RoseMax Rose'Blue wave' Democrats eye comebacks after losing reelection Overnight Defense: Austin takes helm at Pentagon | COVID-19 briefing part of Day 1 agenda | Outrage over images of National Guard troops in parking garage Austin sworn in as nation's first Black Pentagon chief MORE (D-N.Y.) also endorsing his White House bid.

Bloomberg has faced scrutiny over New York City's controversial stop-and-frisk policy, which disproportionately affected African American and Latino residents. Bloomberg apologized for the policy shortly after kicking off his campaign in November.

Despite defending the policy before he ran for president, the former mayor has emphasized racial justice issues on the campaign trail, saying in a recent speech “My story might have turned out very differently if I had been black, and … more black Americans of my generation would have ended up with far more wealth, had they been white.”