Former New York mayor and media mogul Michael Bloomberg announced that he is running for president, a decision that make shake up the race for the Democratic nomination.
“I believe my unique set of experiences in business, government, and philanthropy will enable me to win and lead,” Bloomberg wrote on Twitter in his announcement video.
He’ll be a centrist in a race where candidates have been under pressure to prove their progressive bonafides. In his video, a narrator says that Bloomberg will make sure that “the wehy will pay more in taxes, and the struggling middle class will get their fair share.”
I’m running for president to defeat Donald Trump and rebuild America.
I believe my unique set of experiences in business, government, and philanthropy will enable me to win and lead.
The narrator also says that Bloomberg advocates a plan where “everyone without heh insurance is guaranteed to get it, and everyone who like theirs can go ahead and keep it.” That puts him at odds with candidates like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, who favor a single-payer plan known as Medicare for All.
The narrator also says that Bloomberg sees “a different kind of menace coming from Washington,” but “there’s no stopping here, because there is an America waiting to be rebuilt.” Bloomberg railed against Trump at the Democratic National Convention in 2016, even though he was still registered as an independent.
Since then, Bloomberg, 77, has registered as a Democrat. He announced last spring that he would not run, but his reconsideration is an indication that he was not satisfied with the way that the Democratic primary has evolved.
A key question will be how Bloomberg’s media property covers the presidential field, and whether his role changes at Bloomberg LP. He stepped away from the company when he was mayor of New York but rejoined it in 2014 as president and CEO. A spokeswoman for his philanthropic organizations did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Joe Biden’s campaign debuted a last-minute campaign spot in Minneapolis on Super Tuesday, one that featured Amy Klobuchar, endorsing the candidate just after dropping out of the race, and the last-minute ad speaks to the stakes involved in the 2020 presidential race. Michael Bloomberg’s injection of hundreds of millions of dollars, coupled with the buys of another self-funder, Tom Steyer, who dropped out on Saturday, has changed the dynamics and shattered records for presidential primary spending, and has given TV stations a greater-than-expected boost in the early months of the year. Last week, some of the largest station groups, including Nexstar Media Group, Gray Television and Sinclair Broadcast Group, reported their earnings and all highlighted political ad spending as bright spots, in some cases raising their revenue projections for the rest of the year. Chris Ripley, the CEO of Sinclair, told analysts that “we expect 2020 to be our highest political revenue on record.” Perry Sook, the CEO of Nexstar, told analysts that they were off to a “very strong start,” He said that Bloomberg’s spending was a “good lead portion of our first quarter money, but there is some offset because we think there is some candidate and PAC money that’s probably on the sidelines because of his spending right now.” Among the biggest unexpected beneficiaries of the ad blitz are TV stations in California. With the primary moved up to March, rather than June, the state is much more of a factor in the nomination race than in previous cycles. But they also have a candidate, Bloomberg, willing to spend huge sums across the state in an effort to compete, whereas other campaigns are depending more heavily on so-called “earned” media, or interviews on local newscasts, morning shows or, in the case of Elizabeth Warren, an appearance on The Ellen Show on Tuesday. According to analytics firm Kinetiq, Bloomberg has spent $72 million on TV ads in the state since Jan. 1, compared to $70 million for Tom Steyer, $8.2 million for Bernie Sanders and $750,000 for Biden, whose investment was made only in the last week. “It has been a windfall more so for California markets than other states because … our primary has coincided with Super Tuesday,” said Bob McCauley, senior vice president of integrated marketing solutions at Entravision in Palm Springs, where the company owns NBC and Univision stations, among others. “The spending in California is far past expectations and Steyer and Bloomberg led the way.” The last time that the California primary coincided with Super Tuesday was in 2008, when it was held on Feb. 5. “The California primary for presidential candidates was never a factor because it was so late. By moving the primary up, at last we saw the state important enough to campaigns to increase their spending,” said Jerry Upham,...