Former staffers for Mike Bloomberg’s short-lived presidential campaign have been shocked to find out that their tax bills are much higher than they anticipated, with their income listed tens of thousands of dollars more than their previous salaries.
Politico reported Tuesday that former aides have started receiving their tax forms, which list higher incomes due to paid housing and other benefits they received while working for the failed presidential campaign.
“In interviews, former Bloomberg aides said they were stunned by the high amounts, examples of which were reviewed by POLITICO. One staffer was shown to have been compensated more than $50,000 than they earned. In another case, a former staffer’s gross amount was about $25,000 more. Others had incomes that were in the range of $10,000 more than what they were paid,” Politico reported.
Representatives for the Bloomberg campaign reportedly told the former aides that these additional taxes they’re told they owe were already paid for by the campaign.
“A Bloomberg campaign spokesman told POLITICO that the aides were paid more during the campaign to account for the higher tax burden, though not all of the ex-aides said they were aware of the arrangement at the time. The spokesman added that Bloomberg’s accountants had no choice but to lump fringe benefits in with the salaries given their interpretation of tax law,” Politico reported.
The staffers told the outlet that the inflated incomes may keep them from receiving Obamacare subsidies, student loan debt forgiveness, coronavirus stimulus checks, or unemployment.
This is just the latest controversy surrounding the former mayor of New York City’s presidential campaign, which lasted just 104 days despite spending more than $1 billion. For that, Bloomberg ended up with just 46 pledged delegates, winning only America Samoa. During that time, Politico previously reported, “Bloomberg’s campaign paid out $23.3 million in salary, fringe benefits and payroll taxes and fees in March alone, according to the campaign finance filing.”
“However, the billionaire also left many former staffers furious by cutting them loose last month. Bloomberg’s campaign enticed Democratic operatives across the country with promises of a paying job through the November election, regardless of whether he ultimately won the nomination or not,” Politico continued. “But Bloomberg reneged on that promise, scrapping plans to form his own super PAC and eventually transferring $18 million to the Democratic National Committee instead to bolster the party committee’s field program. Staffers who wanted to work at the DNC had to reapply for jobs, with some staffers getting paid through the first week in April and getting full benefits through the end of the month, according to a release at the time.”
As The Daily Wire’s Emily Zanotti previously reported, former Bloomberg campaign staffers filed a lawsuit against the former mayor for reneging on that promise. The staffers claim Bloomberg defrauded them by promising them jobs through November and then firing them after he suspended his campaign.
“While we considered creating our own independent entity to support the nominee and hold the President accountable, this race is too important to have many competing groups with good intentions but that are not coordinated and united in strategy and execution,” the campaign said in a statement at the time. “The dynamics of the race have also fundamentally changed, and it is critically important that we all do everything we can to support our eventual nominee and scale the Democratic Party’s general election efforts.”