The 73-year-old founder of the eponymous financial information group was critical of the quality of debate in the presidential contest and said he was “looking at all the options” when asked whether he was considering a run, the newspaper said.
“I find the level of discourse and discussion distressingly banal and an outrage and an insult to the voters,” Bloomberg told the Financial Times in an interview, adding that the U.S. public deserved “a lot better.”
Bloomberg has told aides to draw up plans for an independent campaign for the U.S. presidency, a source familiar with the situation told Reuters on Jan. 23, confirming a report in the New York Times.
He would be willing to spend at least $1 billion of his own money on a campaign for the November 2016 election, according to the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the former mayor’s thinking.
Bloomberg has given himself an early March deadline for entering the race, the source said, after commissioning a poll in December to see how he would fare against Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the Republican and Democratic front-runners.
No third-party candidate has ever won a U.S. presidential election. But Bloomberg, who has close Wall Street ties and liberal social views, sees an opening for his candidacy if Republicans nominate Trump or Texas Senator Ted Cruz and the Democrats nominate Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, the source said.
A recent Reuters/Ipsos poll showed a third-party presidential run by Bloomberg would be a long shot but could help real estate mogul Donald Trump if he lands the Republican nomination.
In a matchup between Trump and Clinton, adding Bloomberg’s name to the ballot would trim Clinton’s lead over Trump to six percentage points from 10, according to the poll conducted from Jan. 23 to Jan. 27.
In a matchup pitting Trump versus Sanders, adding Bloomberg would erode Sanders’ lead over Trump to seven points from 12, the poll results showed.
In all matchups, Bloomberg himself would land just 10 percent or less of the vote in November.
The 73-year-old financial information industry billionaire, who earned a reputation as a social liberal with strong Wall Street ties during his time as New York City mayor, has considered a White House run for years.
(Additional reporting by Dustin Volz and Steve Holland in Washington and Chris Kahn in New York; Reporting by Eric Walsh in Washington; Editing by Andrew Hay)
SAP is the sponsor of this content. It was independently created by Reuters’ editorial staff and funded in part by SAP, which otherwise has no role in this coverage.
Want to watch Richard Poplak’s audition for SA’s Got Talent?
Who doesn’t? Alas, it was removed by the host site for prolific swearing*... Now that we’ve got your attention, we thought we’d take the opportunity to talk to you about the small matter of book burning and freedom of speech.
Since its release, Pieter-Louis Myburgh’s book Gangster State, has sparked numerous fascist-like behavior from certain members of the public (and the State). There have been planned book burnings, disrupted launches and Ace Magashule has openly called him a liar. And just to say thanks, a R10m defamation suit has been lodged against the author.
Pieter-Louis Myburgh is our latest Scorpio Investigative journalist recruit and we’re not going to let him and his crucial book be silenced. When the Cape Town launch was postponed, Maverick Insider stepped in and relocated it to a secure location so that Pieter-Louis’ revelations could be heard by the public. If we’ve learnt one thing over the past ten years it is this: when anyone tries to infringe on our constitutional rights, we have to fight back. Every day, our journalists are uncovering more details and evidence of State Capture and its various reincarnations. The rot is deep and the threats, like this recent one to freedom of speech, are real. You can support the cause by becoming an Insider and help free the speech that can make a difference.
*No video of Richard Poplak auditioning for SA’s Got Talent actually exists. Unless it does and we don’t know about it please send it through.
Towns near Fukushima are now being plagued by hordes of rampaging radioactive wild boars. Where are Asterix and Obelix when you need them?