This weekend brought a good reminder about how campaign spokespeople are just hired guns, spinning the message for whoever is picking up the tab.
When papers reported on Saturday that Mayor Bloomberg – who has refused to participate in the city’s public campaign finance system that caps spending – has already spent an astonishing $65 million, chief Bloomberg campaign spokesperson Jill Hazelbaker told the Times the billionaire mayor’s spending was “prudent.” She took some shots at Democratic mayoral candidate Bill Thompson, and then added: “We’re not taking anything for granted.”
O.K., now roll back the tape to last year when Hazelbaker was communications director for Republican presidential nominee John McCain who was trying to make hay out of the fact that Obama, then pulling in millions on the Internet, had decided to not participate in the federal public campaign finance system. Here’s Hazelbaker in a June, 2008 statement: “Barack Obama is now the first presidential candidate since Watergate to run a campaign entirely on private funds. This decision will have far-reaching and extraordinary consequences that will weaken and undermine the public financing system.”
Hey, when you’re on Mike Bloomberg’s pay roll, consistency isn’t your first concern.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 5, 2009