Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg pledged Tuesday to spend $40 million to tackle the coronavirus outbreak less than a month after plowing half a billion in a losing White House bid.
Bloomberg’s primary charity is using cash infusion to bankroll the training of health care workers who are working in Africa and elsewhere to fight the virus. The former Republican-turned-Democrat’s contribution will also help finance research labs working with the deadly strain.
“Millions of lives depend on getting the coronavirus response right — and so does the economic and social health of communities around the world. We need to slow transmission of the virus and minimize the impact of the outbreak in all countries,” Bloomberg said in a statement announcing the move. He is using Bloomberg Philanthropies to distribute the donations.
Bloomberg gained notoriety for spending roughly $5 million on each delegate he won on Super Tuesday after plowing more than $500 million into an ill-fated White House bid targeting President Donald Trump. He suspended his campaign March 4 after a poor showing.
“The challenge of the moment is clear: we must confront this President and do everything we can to defeat him,” Bloomberg said in a statement in February before bailing on the bid. “The President’s attack on me clearly reflects his fear over the growing strength of my campaign.”
The New York billionaire dumped more than $234 million into TV, radio and digital ads in the Super Tuesday states. His campaign’s money pit caught the Trump campaign’s attention as well. (RELATED: Sanders, Biden, Bloomberg Have Paid Combined $466,000 To Superdelegates)
Trump, meanwhile, donated his fourth quarter salary March 3 to the Department of Health and Human Services in a bid to help the agency pursue solutions to the virus spread, which is believed to have originated December 2019 in Wuhan, China.
The virus has spread since February to 36 other countries and territories and has a global death toll of 3,041, according to the CDC‘s numbers. Bloomberg Philanthropies has not responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment about the nature of the former mayor’s contribution.
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