Howard Wolfson on The Axe Files podcast

PODCAST PLAYBACK — Howard Wolfson, a Democratic political strategist and senior advisor to Michael Bloomberg, discussed his Jewish upbringing and the rise of global anti-Semitism on The Axe Files podcast with David Axelrod: “There was a lot of conversation in my father’s parents’ house of the Holocaust and the impact of the Holocaust on their family and the Jewish people as a whole. I have a very early memory of them talking about the Holocaust and what it meant to them.”

“They were corresponding with relatives — in the old country if you will — with some frequency. Then all of a sudden the letters stop. That was obviously a pretty telling indication that something terrible was happening and had happened. I sort of felt like there was this life that had been touched by history… These were not people who were congressmen or mayors or presidents, but I think I learned pretty early on that circumstances can really impact what happens to people.”

Axelrod: You commented recently on this surge in anti-Semitic acts here in this country, with Pittsburgh being the most tragic of them. You must see them in the context of history.

Wolfson: “I do. I feel like we’re living through history again. Not in ways that we would have necessarily imagined or certainly hoped for. I am enormously hopeful based on the results of the last election. I am worried about the larger set of circumstances that a lot of us find ourselves in and see around us. If you look at the western world, there’s a lot of turmoil and a lot of anger, a lot of unrest and tumult. It’s a worrisome time.”

Axelrod: You see phrases that you saw in the past about globalists and international bankers and the corrupt media. Some of it has been aimed by the President of the United States at the guy you work for (Mike Bloomberg).

Wolfson: “He actually hasn’t been… He’s not been overly critical of Mike, but phrases like that have echoes in history and they’re not good ones. As I said, I think it’s a worrisome time. Having said that, I think that there was a real reaction to a lot of this on the part of the American people in the last midterm election.” 

Wolfson on getting over the fear of flying: “The joke that I tell, which I think has some grain of truth to it, is that after Hillary [Clinton] lost in 2008 I was so depressed that I needed to get out of the country and I didn’t care whether I lived or died to do it. So I got on a plane to the UK, I was able to take a number of trips there, and somehow just snapped out of it.”

Axelrod: Are you ready to commit yourself to another campaign?

Wolfson: “If Mike [Bloomberg] runs, I will do anything I can that he wants me to do to be helpful to him. So, certainly.” [AxeFiles]

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