Earlier this month, our nips got mighty hard when we learned that Mayor-For-Life-In-The-NYC-Of-His-Mind Michael Bloomberg hadn't ruled out a presidential run in 2016 after evaluating the current lot of frontrunners. According to the Times today, Bloomberg "has instructed advisers to draw up plans for a potential independent campaign in this year’s presidential race." SHIT JUST GOT REAL.
So what inspired Bloomberg to throw his theoretical hat in the ring this late in the game? The sorry state of the current frontrunners, of course: "His advisers and associates said he was galled by Donald J. Trump’s dominance of the Republican field, and troubled by Hillary Clinton’s stumbles and the rise of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont on the Democratic side."
America is such an efficient culture that billionaires launch their coup plans before the socialist is even elected.
— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) January 23, 2016
Another source told ABC, "He's definitely thinking about it (a run) more than he was," which signals to us that we should start mass-producing Bloomberg-For-Youberg pins. So how would he distinguish himself from the other bored billionaires and aspiring billionaires currently twiddling their thumbs in their estates while contemplating national campaignst? The Times reports his aides have a campaign plan that includes "a series of detailed policy speeches, backed by an intense television advertising campaign that would introduce him to voters around the country as a technocratic problem-solver and self-made businessman who understands the economy and who built a bipartisan administration in New York." Who could resist?!
I think America deserves to have a Bloomberg v Deez Nuts election in 2016. https://t.co/thEmHPwqhb
— emptywheel (@emptywheel) January 23, 2016
But let's get to the really important question: how much money is Bloomberg gonna throw away on what is sure to be a completely unsuccessful prez bid? Answer: more money than you or anyone you know is worth.
Mr. Bloomberg, 73, has already taken concrete steps toward a possible campaign, and has indicated to friends and allies that he would be willing to spend at least $1 billion of his fortune on it, according to people briefed on his deliberations who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss his plans. He 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.
Although Bloomberg has flirted with mounting a campaign before (as he said in 2010: "I think, actually, a third-party candidate could run the government easier than a partisan political President"), he's never really seemed all that passionate about it. He has repeatedly noted that his beliefs alienate over half the country off the bat: "I'm pro-choice. I'm pro-gay rights. I'm pro-immigration. I'm against guns. I believe in Darwin."
Reactions to the news have been totally chill and nonchalant.
Bloomberg is someone who only plays in NYC who the media covers for the same reason. A disaster ego candidacy otherwise.
— Oliver Willis (@owillis) January 23, 2016
I don't consider this a statement of bias but fact: Bloomberg destroyed New York lol
— Peter Moskowitz (@ptrmsk) January 23, 2016
Some of us remember how Mayor Bloomberg left Red Hook unplowed after a blizzard. So much for the can-do technocrat.
— Jody Rosen (@jodyrosen) January 23, 2016
I think America is ready for Michael Bloomberg, an imperious 5'6" orange man whose human relations style is Man Fifth In Line For Bathroom.
— David Roth (@david_j_roth) January 23, 2016
It is the year 5,000,000,000 AD. The sun has exhausted its hydrogen fuel and goes dark. Bloomberg still weighing his presidential bid.
— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) January 23, 2016
Because what America needs now is a *real* billionaire plutocrat, not a faux-populist vulgarian. pic.twitter.com/VnsuJd5XGU
— Ben Wizner (@benwizner) January 23, 2016
And let’s be real. Bloomberg’s main sell is he gives upwardly mobile whites a vaguely liberal option shorn of minority interests.
— Jamelle Bouie (@jbouie) January 23, 2016
Michael Bloomberg is the perfect candidate for the electorate's anti-establishment mood. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) January 23, 2016
Michael Bloomberg needs a fucking hobby.
— Bae Talese (@elongreen) January 23, 2016
Jeet Heer of The New Republic described Bloomberg as holding a gun to the head of American democracy: "Bloomberg’s intent is clear: He’s considering running not because he has a viable program he wants to promote, but because he wants to exercise a veto over the already existing parties—especially a veto over whom the Democrats pick."
But at least we're one step closer to all the homies getting to the White House.
tfw all the homies wanna be president pic.twitter.com/4ttSscEdfR
— Gideon Resnick (@GideonResnick) January 23, 2016