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HomeNewsPoliticsMichael Bloomberg Weighs Independent White House Bid, a Potential Disaster for Democrats

Michael Bloomberg Weighs Independent White House Bid, a Potential Disaster for Democrats

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Global Mayors Summit Addresses Climate Issues During COP21

Michael Bloomberg at a news conference at the COP21 climate summit in Paris, on Dec. 4, 2015. (Photo: Christophe Morin/Bloomberg/Getty)

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is considering a presidential run as an independent candidate, according to a new report. The New York Times reported that Bloomberg has already instructed advisers to put together a game plan in the event he decided to make an independent bid in this year’s presidential race.

His advisers and associates said he was concerned about the rise of socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders, the outcome of the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton, and “galled” by Donald Trump’s dominance of the Republican field.

Bloomberg, 73, a billionaire Republican-turned-Democrat-turned-independent former mayor of New York City, has weighed running for the presidency on a third-party ticket in the past. But, in the end, the pragmatist has always concluded he could not successfully compete. Yet, with his braintrust studying past independent bids going back to Teddy Roosevelt, they believe the anything-but-typical 2016 election cycle may prove to be an opportunity.

However, contrary to what the report claimed, PPD’s senior political analyst Richard Baris said it’s crystal clear that a Bloomberg independent bid would hurt the Democratic nominee.

“There isn’t much enthusiasm for a gun-grabbing, nanny state menu-serving former mayor of New York City among GOP and GOP-leaning voters in the general electorate,” Baris said. “The idea that he would draw significant support from the Republican nominee in a three-way race is delusional and absurd.”

Baris said polling conducted by PPD as well as aggregate data from public polling surveys show a significant bloc of typical Democratic voters are having a hard time getting behind Mrs. Clinton. Those voters were either not going to vote, at all, or might have even crossed over to the Republican nominee if he or she has the right appeal.

“We have consistently identified a group of voters who are–to say the least–unenthusiastic about Clinton,” Baris added. “The goods news for Bloomberg is that he is likely to take the vast majority of those voters, perhaps by a margin as large as 8 in 10. The bad news for him is that there aren’t enough of them to win a general election, just enough to cost Mrs. Clinton the election.”

Bloomberg commissioned a poll in December that pits him against Trump and Clinton in a hypothetical three-way race. According to sources, he plans to conduct another round of polling after the New Hampshire Democratic primary on Feb. 9–where Clinton is now the underdog in aggregate polling–to gauge whether there is indeed an opening for him, according to two people familiar with his intentions.

Written by
Staff Writing Group

Led by R. D. Baris, the People's Pundit, the PPD Elections Staff conducts polling and covers news about latest polls, election results and election data.

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