After years of what Vox describes as “a game of will-he-or-won’t-he,” Michael Bloomberg, 11th richest person in the world, has formally launched a Democratic bid for president. Formerly a Republican, Bloomberg announced his candidacy in a statement posted on a campaign website just 10 weeks before primary voting. “I’m running for president to defeat Donald Trump and rebuild America,” Bloomberg wrote. He added that “we cannot afford four more years of President Trump’s reckless and unethical actions.” According to Yahoo! News, Bloomberg is “expected to struggle among the [Democratic] party’s energized progressive base.”
Bloomberg has already vowed to spend at least $150 million on pieces of a 2020 campaign. While he did not specify the amount that he is willing to spend on his overall presidential plans, Howard Wolfson, his senior adviser, said: “Whatever it takes to defeat Donald Trump.” Wolfson added that Bloomberg would not take a salary if he becomes president.
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Bernie Sanders was not in favor of Bloomberg’s plans to rely on personal fortune. “I’m disgusted by the idea that Michael Bloomberg or any billionaire thinks they can circumvent the political process and spend tens of millions of dollars to buy elections,” Sanders said on Twitter. Elizabeth Warren also added that rich people “don’t get a bigger share of democracy, especially in a Democratic primary. We need to be doing the face-to-face work that lifts every voice.”
.@berniesanders immediately comes out swinging against Bloomberg's record-breaking ad buy.
"I’m disgusted by the idea that Michael Bloomberg or any other billionaire thinks they can circumvent the political process and spend tens of millions of dollars to buy our elections." pic.twitter.com/18zz1RAMp3
— Daniel Marans (@danielmarans) November 22, 2019
A poll by Morning Consult found that only 4 percent of Democratic primary voters would pick Bloomberg as their first choice to be the party’s nominee. However, in a head-to-head poll with President Trump, Bloomberg had a lead over the president.