Bloomberg sharpens attacks on Sanders

New York, Feb 25
Democratic presidential contender and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has sharpened attacks on Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders after the latter's victory in the party's Nevada caucuses.

A spokesman for Bloomberg's campaign told reporters here on Monday that it was very important for the billionaire businessman's team to state what they think about Sanders and his policies and why they don't believe he would be the Democratic Party's best presidential nominee against incumbent President Donald Trump in the November 3 election, reports Efe news.

The media mogul's campaign also released a statement later Monday in which it accused Sanders of having voted in the past against bills that would increase regulations on firearms and coming down on the side of the National Rifle Association, the biggest US pro-gun lobbying group.

"The NRA paved the road to Washington for Bernie Sanders," Bloomberg tweeted. "He spent the next three decades making sure they got a return on their investment. We deserve a president who is not beholden to the gun lobby."

Along with the Twitter message, the campaign posted a 90-second video claiming that the gun rights lobby helped Sanders win a seat in Congress in 1990.

Bloomberg campaign chairman Kevin Sheekey also listed in the campaign's statement all the gun control bills that Sanders has voted against over his years in Congress.

In addition, Bloomberg's campaign - which has already spent hundreds of millions of dollars in political advertising lambasting Trump and promoting the former Mayor - on Monday announced that starting Tuesday it would send a bus loaded with staff on a road trip around California to tell voters about the differences between Bloomberg, a former Republican now turned Democrat, and Sanders, a Democratic socialist.

Sanders, who represents a state with a strong hunting tradition, was already attacked over his gun control stance in 2016 by Hillary Clinton's campaign.

In recent years, Sanders has insisted that he supports much stricter gun control and measures similar to those proposed by other Democrats such as banning assault rifles, and he has expressed pride over the poor rating the NRA has given his positions.

With his victory in the Nevada caucuses, Sanders has emerged as the frontrunner in the Democratic primary process, while Bloomberg seems to have lost some of his own momentum after the televised Democratic debate last week in which he was harshly attacked by other candidates.