Asked by the moderator about claims that his company was a hostile workplace for women, Bloomberg deployed several cringey defenses: The only complaints about him concerned bad jokes; other women at his company had a great time; non-disclosure agreements women signed were, in his words, “consensual.”
Sen. Elizabeth Warren did not have time for any of it. She continued a long night of savaging the founder of financial services giant Bloomberg LP by casting doubt on his ability to match up against President Donald Trump, who has also been the subject of scores of accusations.
“We are not going to beat Donald Trump with a man who has who knows how many non-disclosure agreements and the drip, drip, drip of stories of women saying they have been harassed and discriminated against,” she said.
When first asked by the moderator about claims he’d said, “I would do you in a second,” to a former female employee, Bloomberg said he has no tolerance for sexual misconduct, but then tried to deflect by listing several women he’d employed in high positions or awards his company had received for being a great workplace.
“I hope you heard what his defense was: I’ve been nice to some women,” Warren shot back.
“Mr. Mayor, are you willing to release all of those women from those non-disclosure agreements, so we can hear their side of the story?” Warren pressed him.
Bloomberg said there were “very few” non-disclosure agreements. “None of them accuse me of doing anything other than maybe they didn’t like the joke I told,” he continued.
Warren then asked Bloomberg to commit to answer how many women he had sign non-disclosure agreements at his company and to commit to releasing them from those contracts so they can come forward.