Bloomberg cited campaign contributions from Ivy League faculty members during the 2012 presidential race in order to press his point. Bloomberg, an independent, endorsed President Barack Obama's re-election. However, in his speech, he said he found it troubling that so many university employees were on the Democratic side of the race.
"In the 2012 presidential race, according to Federal Election Commission data, 96% of all campaign contributions from Ivy League faculty and employees went to Barack Obama," he said. "There was more disagreement among the old Soviet politburo than there is among Ivy League donors."He made this point at Harvard University, where he was making a commencement address. The politburo reference is a particularly nice touch, because it was specifically designed to piss people off. And it will.
Bloomberg went on to suggest this data shows universities might not be offering students a diverse array of perspectives.
"Neither party has a monopoly of truth or God on its side. When 96% of Ivy League donors prefer one candidate to another, you really have to wonder whether students are being exposed to the diversity of views that a great university should offer," Bloomberg continued, occasionally being interrupted by moderate applause. "A university cannot be great if its faculty is political homogeneous."
Two further points:
- He's right, of course. Diversity is strictly a demographic concern on many college campuses. Diversity of viewpoint is not.
- He's still a bad choice for public office of any sort because he's rather in love with force. Scolds do serve a useful purpose, as long as they don't have any real power.