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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

8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Kellyanne Conway's parting power pointers

Kellyanne Conway addresses the 2020 Republican National Convention. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

Kellyanne Conway has seen power exercised as a pollster, campaign manager and senior counselor to President Trump. Now that his term in office has concluded, she shared her thoughts with Axios.

Why it matters: If there's a currency in this town, it's power, so we've asked several former Washington power brokers to share their best advice as a new administration and new Congress settle in.

8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

GOP holdouts press on with plans to crush Cheney

Screenshot of emails to a member of Congress from individuals who signed an Americans for Limited Government petition against Rep. Liz Cheney. Photo obtained by Axios

Pro-Trump holdouts in the House are forging ahead with an uphill campaign to oust Rep. Liz Cheney as head of the chamber's Republican caucus even though Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told them to back down.

Why it matters: What happens next will be a test of McCarthy's party control and the sincerity of his opposition to the movement. Cheney (R-Wyo.) is seen as a potential leadership rival to the California Republican.

Democrats aim to punish House GOP for Capitol riot

Speaker Nancy Pelosi passes through a newly installed metal detector at the House floor entrance Thursday. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

House Democrats plan to take advantage of corporate efforts to cut funding for Republicans who opposed certifying the 2020 election results, with a plan to target vulnerable members in the pivotal 2022 midterms for their role in the Jan. 6 violence.

Why it matters: It's unclear whether the Democrats' strategy will manifest itself in ads or earned media in the targeted races or just be a stunt to raise money for themselves. But the Capitol violence will be central to the party's messaging as it seeks to maintain its narrow majorities in Congress.