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Bloomberg struggles to respond to politics of #MeToo era

Some political operatives warn that Bloomberg needs to address the issue or risk doing further damage to his campaign.

WASHINGTON — Mike Bloomberg's name last appeared on a ballot a decade before #MeToo transformed cultural mores surrounding sexual harassment and the treatment of women. 

As he campaigns for the presidency, the 78-year-old billionaire is struggling to adjust.

The former New York City mayor was caught flat-footed during much of this week's Democratic debate when rival Elizabeth Warren blasted his company's use of non-disclosure agreements in cases of sexual harassment.

RELATED: Bloomberg nabs three new congressional endorsements after debate debut

Other candidates have apologized for similar issues surrounding their campaign. Some political operatives warn that Bloomberg needs to address the issue or risk doing further damage to his campaign.

During the debate, Warren also slammed Bloomberg for comments about women. Right out of the gate, the gloves came off in the opening moments, with Warren taking on Bloomberg for calling "women fat broad and horse faced lesbians."

RELATED: Democratic debate: Bloomberg expecting fierce attacks as he faces first major test

Bloomberg has skipped campaigning in the early voting states and is instead focusing on the March 3 voting states.

Bloomberg spent hundreds of millions of dollars on ads and courted black voters whose support will be crucial to winning the Democratic nomination. 

The former New York mayor and media mogul said he would sell his business interests if elected president with a top campaign adviser. He said he would sell the financial data and media company that bears his name if he's elected into the White House. 

Bloomberg would put Bloomberg LP into a blind trust, and the trustee would sell it, with the proceeds going to Bloomberg's philanthropy. That stands in contrast to President Donald Trump, who has not fully divested from his business entities or put them in a blind trust.