2008_10_bloomb.jpgAs to be expected, there's divided opinion on Mayor Bloomberg's expected announcement that he will purse a third term as mayor.

In one corner, big business is happy. The NY Times reports that "executives like the financier Steven Rattner, the developer Jerry I. Speyer and the media mogul Rupert Murdoch have encouraged him to seek a third term." (Bloomberg also spoke to Murdoch, Mort Zuckerman and Arthur Sulzberger Jr., the three big newspaper publishers in the city, about a third term.)

The the other, watchdog groups and other politicians are skeptical. Common Cause said, "That would be abhorrent. That is making an end run around what the voters have done twice." City Comptroller Bill Thompson said, "Right now the law says that there are two terms. It is my intention to run for mayor next year."

Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum referred to Ronald Lauder, the billionaire who sunk millions into the term limits initiative in the 1990s but expressed his support for a third Bloomberg term, "What matters here is what New Yorkers think and say on this issue, not what one powerful cosmetics heir has to say. The rules cannot and should not be changed late in the game. That's not the way our democracy works. This is a decision for the people- not for incumbents, not for editorial boards and not for a few wealthy and powerful individuals."

Reportedly three of Bloomberg's deputy mayors think it's a bad idea--it looks like a power grab, etc.--but it seems like the City Council has enough votes to pass legislation to overturn term limits. And Rudy Giuliani, our former mayor who considered overturning term limits himself after September 11, 2001, gave his tacit okay, "My view was always two terms - that seems about right. That's the way the presidency is done. But I've never had any objection to the idea of three terms... You got two things sort of weighted against each other. You have the vote of the people twice to keep these term limits ... but on the other hand we have a very good mayor and a very difficult time."