Billionaire Michael Bloomberg has officially decided to run for President. His announcement came in the form of an ad on social media.

The ad portrays Bloomberg as a middle class kid who worked his way through college, built a business empire, and created thousands of jobs. 

Bloomberg, who has repeatedly flirted with running for president and even said he was sitting out the 2020 race earlier this year, kicked things off with a $30+ million dollar television ad buy across a reported 25 states, including Florida, Texas, Massachusetts, California, Pennsylvania, Mississippi and Michigan.

His extraordinary fortune—an estimated $54 billion—could buy him the name recognition he needs in a competitive Democratic field. Tourist Karen Town from Georgia already knows who he is. She was at Grand Central Terminal with a friend on Sunday.

“We like him and we just feel like there haven't been any candidates, at least who we've been sympathetic to, who have any charisma. For us that's something that we've been missing in the Democratic race,” she said.

Town said even though she's ready for a progressive President, such as Bernie Sanders, she thinks the rest of the country is looking for a moderate, such as Bloomberg.

But it may be difficult for Bloomberg to win over some local voters, as the mayor who pushed the controversial policing practice called stop-and-frisk, and staunchly defended it.

“Yeah I don't like him because of that,” said Dan Wilson of Westchester County. “I think now he's just trying to admit that it was wrong, just to secure votes.”

Last week, Bloomberg apologized for stop-and-frisk at a black church in East New York, Brooklyn, saying the tactic eroded trust. Police made millions of stops in the name of getting guns off the street, but no weapons were found in the vast majority of cases. Black and Latino men in low income neighborhoods were mostly affected by the aggressive form of policing. A judge later found the stops to be unconstitutional.

Political analyst Christina Greer said that as a presidential candidate, Bloomberg needs to confront, not just stop-and-frisk, but also the lack of diversity in his companies. 

“That’s not just racial and ethnic diversity but also gender diversity and promotions,” the Fordham University political science professor said. “In an era of #MeToo he’s going to have to account for that in a substantive way, in ways that he just did not have to in the past.”

But Greer also said Bloomberg’s formidable wealth cannot be discounted.

“I know that Michael Bloomberg says he’d only spend $100 million but keep in mind he spent $100 million to become Mayor of New York City and that was roughly almost twenty years ago,” she said. 

Bloomberg is entering the presidential race as a Democrat just 10 weeks before primary voting begins. He’ll skip the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary in February, and target delegate-heavy Super Tuesday in March, when primaries in 15 jurisdictions take place.

Cindy Rodriguez is an investigative reporter for New York Public Radio. You can follow her on Twitter at @cynrod.