What About Mike Bloomberg?
Author: Greg Valliere
October 17, 2019
A NEAR-PANIC has set in among many Democrats, who openly asked yesterday: is there anyone other than Joe Biden or Elizabeth Warren? We received several emails that asked whether Michael Bloomberg might reconsider his decision not to run, so here’s our take on two reasons why that’s unlikely . . .
FIRST, THE AGE ISSUE: Bloomberg, 77, is nearly a year older than Biden, who turns 77 later this fall. Second and more importantly, the Democratic Party is way, way to the left of Bloomberg on a wide range of issues. He’s an unabashed supporter of Wall Street, and he favors tough police powers.
WE THINK BLOOMBERG has the brains and steeliness to be a good president, but if he miraculously won the party’s nomination, a huge percentage of Democrats would refuse to vote in the general election; he’s simply too far to the right for the activist base. He’s one of the world’s Top 20 wealthiest people, with a net worth of over $50 billion and a sterling reputation as a philanthropist, but he doesn’t fit in either party.
SO OUR ADVICE TO DEMOCRATS who want someone else is as follows: there’s no last-minute savior — probably not Michelle Obama or Hillary Clinton. The nominee will come from the current batch of candidates in a race that still has a few months to go, plenty of time for fresh face to emerge. And that process may have begun on Tuesday night.
THE BUZZ IN WASHINGTON YESTERDAY mostly focused on Donald Trump’s near-certain impeachment trial, likely to begin by late November, but among Democrats there were fresh doubts about the radical Warren and the cash-strapped Biden — and, in private, a renewed focus on Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg, who suddenly are in the nomination mix.
PARTY INSIDERS ARE GRUMBLING about the debate process itself. The format is absurd — 12 candidates jammed onto a stage with 60 seconds to explain complex policy issues. Some candidates like Buttigieg are glib, others like Biden never excelled in this format. “This is how we’re going to nominate a president?” one party veteran complained yesterday. Yes, it is.
FEW DEMOCRATS IN THIS CITY think Bloomberg has much of a chance; the party will happily take his money, but would never nominate him. What about an independent movement — a Bloomberg-Mitt Romney centrist ticket focused on spending discipline and a robust U.S. foreign policy? A pipe dream, two old rich white guys with no chance of winning 270 electoral votes.
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