Media Magnate And Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg Drawing Up Plans For 2016 White House Run
What could be better than one brash, bold, brazen billionaire running for president? Mike Bloomberg thinks the answer is two.
The founder, owner, and CEO ofÂ Bloomberg L.P., a massive media and financial data corporation who managed to win a third term as NYC mayor by convincing the NYC city council to overturn a pre-existing law limiting officeholders to two terms, may run for presidentÂ â€“ as an independent.
Bloomberg is "galled byÂ Donald J. Trumpâ€™sÂ dominance of the Republican field, and troubled by Hillary Clintonâ€™s stumbles and the rise of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont on the Democratic side," The New York Times reports, attributing the view to "advisers and associates." The 73-year old "has instructed advisers to draw up plans for a potential independent campaign in this yearâ€™s presidential race."
The Times reports Bloomberg "would be willing to spend at least $1 billion of his fortune," and "has set a deadline for making a final decision in early March, the latest point at which advisers believe Mr. Bloomberg could enter the race and still qualify to appear as an independent candidate on the ballot in all 50 states."
Bloomberg would enter the race if the GOP nominee is Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, or another far right Republican, and if Bernie Sanders is the Democratic nominee. Bloomberg does not think he can beat Hillary Clinton.
Bloomberg running for President would almost certainly hand the WH to the GOP. If no one gets 270 EV's, GOP congress picks the prezâ€” Dan Pfeiffer (@danpfeiffer) January 23, 2016
â€œIf Hillary wins the nomination, Hillary is mainstream enough that Mike would have no chance, and Mikeâ€™s not going to go on a suicide mission,â€ Democrat and former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, a friend of the former mayor, told the Times.
Like Trump, Mike Bloomberg has been labeled a totalitarian. Like Trump, Bloomberg started as a Democrat, and has been a Republican and an Independent. Like Trump, Bloomberg is a New York billionaire, although didn't inherit millions and a company.
Responses on Twitter from both the left and the right were not especially positive:
Reminder: Bloomberg was just fine with being a Republican and speaking at their convention pushing Bush in 04â€” Oliver Willis (@owillis) January 23, 2016
Hide your sodas. Hide your guns. Nanny Bloomberg's going to run. https://t.co/LBEE5H6l1fâ€” Michelle Malkin (@michellemalkin) January 23, 2016
Just what we need, not! https://t.co/NHQNWRKdVcâ€” Mark R. Levin (@marklevinshow) January 23, 2016
Michael Bloomberg gave us Rick Snyder who gave Flint lead in their water. You've been generous enough, Mike. pic.twitter.com/uBaJ21UVddâ€” LOLGOP (@LOLGOP) January 23, 2016
Bloomberg letâ€™s you support climate change action and marriage equality without worrying about what black people think.â€” Jamelle Bouie (@jbouie) January 23, 2016
I was just thinking this race needed an obnoxious New York billionaire with terrible ideas. https://t.co/YPNfqST2ZQâ€” Jesse Walker (@notjessewalker) January 23, 2016
Bloomberg is a pro-choice, anti-gun Wall Street Republican. He has no constituency. #notgonnahappenâ€” George Zornick (@gzornick) January 23, 2016
A Bloomberg candidacy would have the virtue of accelerating Idiocracy by ensuring that the Big Gulp becomes a symbol of political rebellionâ€” Michael Tracey (@mtracey) January 23, 2016
Some offered a different view:
Michael Bloomberg is the perfect candidate for the electorate's anti-establishment mood. Â¯\_(ãƒ„)_/Â¯â€” Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) January 23, 2016
Looking forward to the triborough general: Brooklyn (Sanders) v. Queens (Trump) v. Manhattan (Bloomberg).â€” Franklin Foer (@FranklinFoer) January 23, 2016
I don't think #Bloomberg really wants to run. He wants to scare Democrats into nominating Clinton over Sanders. And he has that power.â€” J.H. Swanson (@jh_swanson) January 23, 2016