Former Bloomberg Staffers Sue Over Campaign Layoffs

Lawsuits allege campaign falsely promised salaries through November

Mike Bloomberg
Mike Bloomberg / Getty Images
March 23, 2020

Democrat Michael Bloomberg's failed presidential campaign is facing at least two lawsuits from former staffers alleging it didn't keep its promise to pay them through the election.

One lawsuit from field organizer Donna Wood in Miami claims the campaign didn't fulfill its pledge to employ staffers through November 2020 and failed to pay for overtime work, according to the New York Times.

The campaign deprived staffers of "promised income and health care benefits, leaving them and their families potentially uninsured in the face of a global pandemic," the complaint reads.

Wood accused the campaign of hiring workers under false pretenses. She worked for the campaign in Miami, but she filed the lawsuit in New York.

Three former staffers in Utah, Washington, and Georgia also filed a lawsuit in New York City, arguing the campaign fraudulently guaranteed payment through the month of November, according to Politico.

The Bloomberg campaign laid off hundreds of workers on Friday as the former New York mayor told employees he would not be creating a super PAC. Instead, Bloomberg used a loophole to transfer $18 million to the DNC, and he also handed over control of his state operations.

After he dropped out of the race in early March, Bloomberg fired employees across all states in which he had operations, except six battleground states. His cancellation of the super PAC last week was followed by the firing of the rest of his remaining staff.

Bloomberg promised field organizers a $6,000-per-month salary, along with a $5,000 relocation stipend and full health, dental, and vision benefits.

The Times reported the contracts it reviewed stipulated the employment with the campaign was "at-will," meaning it could be terminated at any time, as long as the termination is not illegal.

Bloomberg spent almost $1 billion in his failed presidential run, eventually winning just one Super Tuesday contest in American Samoa. He dropped out on March 4 and endorsed Joe Biden.