MSNBC’s Brian Williams and Guest Flub Math: Bloomberg Spent Enough to Give Every American A Million Dollars

MSNBC’s Brian Williams and Guest Flub Math: Bloomberg Spent Enough to Give Every American A Million Dollars

MSNBC’s Brian Williams and his guest, New York Times editorial board member Mara Gay struggled with math on Thursday night in a moment that has gone viral. Williams quoted a tweet claiming that former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg spent so much on his presidential campaign that he could have given every American a million dollars.

However, the claim was clear wrong, as a simple equation would have proven. Bloomberg spent around $500 million and the U.S. population is around 327 million people. Therefore, Bloomberg spent around $1.50 for every American. Williams and Gay, however, failed to spot the obvious math in front of them.

If you wanted to give every American a million dollars, the cost would be around $327 trillion. The current U.S. national debt is $22.7 trillion, while GDP is $19.39 trillion. In fact, the amount needed is greater than global GDP.

“When I read it tonight on social media, it kind of all became clear,” Williams said, before making the false claim.

“It’s an incredible way of putting it,” he added.

“It’s an incredible way of putting it. It’s true,” Gay agreed, wrongly. “It’s disturbing.”

The exchange has already been widely mocked on social media.

Watch the video above, via Twitter.

Darragh Roche

Darragh Roche

Darragh Roche is Senior Editor and Political News Writer.