Nov 16, 2019

Bloomberg 2020 decision "days, not weeks" away

Stills from Bloomberg's ad campaign

Michael Bloomberg's final decision on a presidential run is "days, not weeks" away, a person familiar with his thinking tells Axios — with an announcement expected before Thanksgiving.

Driving the news: The source said the billionaire and former New York mayor's funding of a $100 million, digital, anti-Trump ad series is "a step toward running for Mike, not a step away from running," and that “he is actively preparing."

The ad campaign, first reported by the New York Times, is aimed at helping whoever wins the Democratic nomination by beginning general election spending now to target Trump early in the battleground states.

  • The first of these ads are expected to go live by Monday.
  • One still image previewed to Axios addresses Trump's use of social media, saying, "A tweet shouldn't threaten our country's security" and "tantrums are not presidential. You shouldn't have to worry about what he'll say on Twitter."
  • Another depicts Trump and Republicans laughing in the White House Rose Garden and says that when it comes to protecting Americans with pre-existing health conditions, "Trump doesn't care."

The digital ads initially are focusing on voters in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan — three states where Trump's narrow victories in 2016 cost Hillary Clinton the presidency — and in Arizona, which Bloomberg considers ripe for a Democratic pickup. They could expand to other states.

The bottom line: If Bloomberg gets in, his ability to compete financially against Trump will be one of his strongest arguments for electability.

Go deeper

Michael Bloomberg reportedly reserves biggest campaign TV ad buy in history

Michael Bloomberg prepares to speak at the Christian Cultural Center in New York. Photo: Yana Paskova/Getty Images

Former New York City mayor and billionaire Michael Bloomberg announced a $31 million TV ad campaign on Friday in several key primary states ahead of an anticipated announcement to enter the 2020 Democratic primary race for president, NBC News reports, citing Advertising Analytics.

Why it matters: The reported figure would be the single biggest ad buy in American campaign history, with Barack Obama holding the previous record at $30 million in 2012. Bloomberg's first ad spend comes as he has filed paperwork to jump into the race, but his campaign team says he has not made a final decision.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Nov 22, 2019

Mike Bloomberg officially announces presidential run

Photo: Yana Paskova/Getty Images

Billionaire and former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg officially announced on Sunday that he's running for president as a Democrat.

"I’m running for president to defeat Donald Trump and rebuild America. We cannot afford four more years of President Trump’s reckless and unethical actions. He represents an existential threat to our country and our values. If he wins another term in office, we may never recover from the damage. The stakes could not be higher. We must win this election. And we must begin rebuilding America. I believe my unique set of experiences in business, government, and philanthropy will enable me to win and lead."
— Mike Bloomberg
Go deeperArrowNov 24, 2019