Used to be that private jets, homes in Bermuda, SUVs with air conditioning units crammed into the passenger side doors, and hefty campaign contributions were enough for most billionaires. Sure, Mayor Bloomberg has donated to plenty of political candidates and causes, most recently Planned Parenthood and a slew of state Republicans who backed gay marriage legislation in Albany. But these days you haven't truly arrived as an influential billionaire unless you've got your own Super PAC. Yesterday, the mayor announced the creation of Independence USA PAC, a PAC of his very own.

"I’ve always believed in the need for more independent leadership, and this new effort will support candidates and causes that will help protect Americans from the scourge of gun violence, improve our schools, and advance our freedoms," Bloomberg said in a statement. The Times reports that Bloomberg will spend $10 to $15 million on close state, local, and Congressional races across the country to back candidates in favor of gun control, reforming schools, and gay marriage (so not Barack Obama or Mitt Romney).

The Times lists a few of the candidates Bloomberg will back:

Among those whom Mr. Bloomberg will support are former Gov. Angus King, an independent running for the United States Senate in Maine; State Senator Gloria Negrete McLeod, who is challenging a fellow Democrat, Representative Joe Baca of California, who the mayor believes has been weak on gun-control; and Representative Bob Dold, a Republican from Illinois who has backed gun-control measures.

Deputy Mayor and former Democratic political hack Howard Wolfson will steer the Super PAC, and won't be receiving a paycheck from City Hall while he does it. Will people finally stop picking on Bloomberg at the Bilderberg bocce tournament now that he has a Super PAC?