WASHINGTON--New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, whose anti-gun SuperPAC was instrumental in Robin Kelly's Democratic primary win, said Wednesday her victory showed it is possible to match--and better-- the political influence of the National Rifle Association.
"Is it a harbinger of things to come? I think so. This is the public speaking," Bloomberg said outside the White House--where he met with President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden--when I asked him about Kelly's Tuesday victory.
Bloomberg's Independence USA SuperPac spent about $2.2 million in the campaign leading up to the Tuesday primary for television ads and direct mail pieces mainly aimed at former Rep. Debbie Halvorson who ran in previous contests with NRA support.
The gun issue dominated the race.
The NRA did not put any money in the contest to replace disgraced former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. in the heavily Democratic district.
"They are probably sorry they didn't," Bloomberg said.
Kelly clinched with 52 percent of the vote to Halvorson's 24 percent.With only nominal GOP opposition in the April general election, the primary win is tantamount to victory.
Doug Schoen, the pollster for Bloomberg's Independence USA said earlier on Wednesday, "It was a defeat for the NRA" and from now on candidates will have to "think twice" before they kowtow to the NRA."