Several of the women bound by non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) with former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg have expressed interest in speaking out about the Democratic presidential candidate but fear the repercussions detailed in their contracts, ABC News reported Thursday.
According to the NDAs obtained by ABC, the women are not allowed to “in any way disparage” their former employer, and, if asked about the agreement, they are advised to say “the parties reached an amicable resolution of this dispute … but should not comment further on their settlement.”
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Bloomberg defended refusing to release women who have sued him from their NDAs.
“You can’t just walk away from it,” he told ABC News, referring to the secrecy agreements. “They’re legal agreements, and for all I know the other side wouldn’t want to get out of it.”
The NDAs are tied to several lawsuits against Bloomberg and his company that allege he made crude and sexist comments to women in his office and created a culture that perpetuated such behavior. At least 17 women have filed lawsuits with three of those suits still ongoing.
Though ABC didn’t specify the consequences outlined in the contracts, they described them as “deeply serious.”
During Wednesday night’s Democratic debate, Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases OVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Joint Chiefs chairman says he regrets participating in Trump photo-op | GOP senators back Joint Chiefs chairman who voiced regret over Trump photo-op | Senate panel approves 0B defense policy bill Trump on collision course with Congress over bases with Confederate names MORE (Mass.) went after Bloomberg, a multi-billionaire who is funding his own campaign, for the NDAs and past comments he’s made against women.
“I’d like to talk about who we’re running against,” Warren said. “A billionaire who calls women ‘fat broads’ and ‘horse-faced lesbians,’ and no, I’m not talking about Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote Warren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Esper orders ‘After Action Review’ of National Guard’s role in protests MORE, I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg.”