Former NYC Mayor to Spend $500 Million of His Own Money to Block Trump from Second Term

Published on February 13, 2019 by Athena Pallas

Billionaire and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg plans to use at least $500 million of his own money to block President Trump from getting reelected, either by supporting Trump’s Democratic opponent or by Bloomberg making his own run for the presidency. Bloomberg has not yet decided on whether he will become a candidate for president in the 2020 election, but that half a billion dollars of his own money, at least, will reportedly be used to stop Trump from having a second term, whether Bloomberg himself runs or not.

Bloomberg reportedly has also set up a political team that since November has been meeting at least once a week at Bloomberg Philanthropies, Michael Bloomberg’s charitable foundation, in Manhattan, working on accumulating data on voter profiles and polling data on key issues in the 2020 election. It is both this wealth of data, and Bloomberg’s personal wealth, that either would be used by Bloomberg as a Democratic candidate for president (which the team calls “Plan A”) or used to the benefit of Donald Trump’s Democratic opponent, even if it is not Bloomberg (which the team calls “Plan B”). According to Politico:

Billionaire philanthropist Michael Bloomberg is preparing to spend at least $500 million from his own pocket to deny President Donald Trump a second term, according to Democratic operatives briefed on his plans…If Bloomberg declines to seek the presidency, his intention is to run an unprecedented data-heavy campaign designed to operate as a shadow political party for the eventual Democratic nominee…To that end, Bloomberg has assembled a political team that, since late November, has been meeting at least once weekly in the Manhattan headquarters of Bloomberg Philanthropies to consider what some aides have called “Plan A” and “Plan B.” Plan A is straightforward: Bloomberg runs for president as a Democrat, not as an independent candidate as he had mused privately in the past. According to Plan B, Bloomberg uses all the data — ranging from meticulously researched profiles of voters to polling data on the top issues that move the electorate — and field staff to help the otherwise-outgunned Democratic Party nominee to end Trump’s presidency.

As recently as last Friday, Bloomberg indicated that in three weeks’ time he would announce a decision on whether or not he would run for the presidency in 2020, a time frame he had already moved forward several times. Bloomberg has certainly made efforts of national consequence, including co-creating America’s Pledge on Climate Change with former California governor Jerry Brown. America’s Pledge is a large consortium of states, cities, corporations, universities, and non-governmental organizations committed to try to meet the United States’ obligations under the Paris climate agreement, despite President Trump’s withdrawal of the federal government from the agreement.

It is clear, though, that Bloomberg, whether he runs or not, has in mind the larger goal of ensuring a loss for Donald Trump in the next election. A Democratic consultant apprised of Bloomberg’s plans, who went unnamed in Politico’s report, said, “They’re going to do the infrastructure and logistical work to fill in the gaps for the state and national parties so that whoever the nominee is would inherit a state-of-the-art, fully functioning infrastructure. It’s being done with a clear and specific purpose: stopping Donald Trump.” $500 million and a well-organized political infrastructure created for the eventual Democratic nominee is certainly a start on that goal.

Featured image by Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons.