BuzzFeed News’‘ Dominic Holden discovered that the Bloomberg Campaign altered a clip from last night’s Democratic debate to make their candidate look victorious. Under fire from moderator Chuck Todd about “redlining,” Bloomberg asks his fellow candidates, “I’m the only one here that’s ever started a business. Is that fair?” In the edited version of this moment, a full 20 seconds of silence go by as the camera moves from one candidate to the next. They look slightly uncomfortable, perhaps embarrassed that they’d never started a business. In an effort to intensify the silence, the sound of crickets can be heard.
The second clip in Holden’s tweet below shows the edited version with the 20 seconds of silence.
And the third clip shows the reality of the moment. Bloomberg says, “I’m the only one here that’s ever started a business. Is that fair?” He glances briefly at the other candidates, for one to two seconds at the most, and he starts speaking again.
Did the campaign really believe that no one would pick up on this? Videos from the debate have been flying around the interest for nearly 24 hours now.
According to Real Clear Politics, 19.7 million people watched the debate, a sharp increase from the 8.7 million who viewed the previous Democratic debate.
I wouldn’t be surprised if viewership was up because voters wanted to “meet” Michael Bloomberg. If so, they were probably disappointed.
The fact that the campaign had to work so hard to create a strong moment for their candidate tells us much about his prospects.
Here, I made the clip of what actually happened when Bloomberg asked who else had started a business. It was not 20 seconds of dumbfounded silence. pic.twitter.com/cpUAH5mkNJ
— Dominic Holden (@dominicholden) February 20, 2020