Michael Bloomberg has filed for the Alabama primary, one of the Super Tuesday states, reports the New York Times. Alabama has an early filing deadline.
CD Media reported on this possibility in September. Whereas The Times spins the strategic move as Bloomberg “signaling his dissatisfaction with the current crop of candidates,” we beg to differ. Bloomberg is a shrewd man if nothing else. He sees Biden’s gaffes, he saw the dazed look and slo-mo answers in the 60 Minutes interview two weeks ago. Even though the polls have kept Biden in the lead, it’s only for lack of an acceptable option.
Bloomberg sees an opening, though it’s doubtful he truly wants to take it.
The other side of this move: Bloomberg is being called upon by his circle of friends, i.e., other billionaires. They know time is running out to introduce a center-left candidate, spend like crazy, and cross their fingers that he doesn’t come off as wooden and elitist in the debates. (He will because he is both wooden and elitist.)
Bloomberg does have results. Many voters sniff at mayor candidates, but running New York City successfully for multiple terms is commendable (don’t bother asking Bill De Blasio, he’s taking a nap). The problem is with the details in those results: Bloomberg’s heavy-handed nanny state predilections such as limiting soda cup sizes and a raft of other restrictions won’t play well with much of the country, especially libertarians.
Bloomberg is above all an elitist. Sure, Trump is a billionaire, but he was blessed with two scoops of common touch, as his rally in Louisiana last night proved yet again.
The bottom line: Bloomberg has managed the impossible for now: he’s just a little pregnant, if only for the moment. Time will tell–maybe Biden’s super PAC really takes off tomorrow, and Millennials start sending him those $1, $5, $10 donations. His latest result–$5 million in October–is much ballyhooed, but it feels more like a dead cat bounce. The smart money is on Bloomberg staying in.
And that presents a new set of challenges for Trump. Perhaps he should seek to turn elitist Bloomberg against Blue Collar Joe? Now that sounds like a fight worth watching with some popcorn (or Corn Pops?) and a Big Gulp.
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