So question for the assembled: who would be hurt more by a Michael Bloomberg third party Perot run, the GOP or the Dems?
Michael R. Bloomberg has instructed advisers to draw up plans for an independent campaign in this year’s presidential race. His advisers said he is galled by Donald J. Trump’s dominance of the Republican field, and troubled by Hillary Clinton’s stumbles and the rise of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont on the Democratic side.
Mr. Bloomberg, the billionaire former mayor of New York City, has in the past contemplated running for the White House on a third-party ticket, but always concluded he could not win. A confluence of unlikely events in the 2016 election, however, has given new impetus to his presidential aspirations.
Mr. Bloomberg, 73, has already taken concrete steps toward a possible campaign, and has indicated to friends and allies that he would be willing to spend at least $1 billion of his fortune on it, according to people briefed on his deliberations who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss his plans. He has set a deadline for making a final decision in early March, the latest point at which advisers believe Mr. Bloomberg could enter the race and still qualify to appear as an independent candidate on the ballot in all 50 states.
He has retained a consultant to help him explore getting his name on those ballots, and his aides have done a detailed study of past third-party bids. Mr. Bloomberg commissioned a poll in December to see how he might fare against Mr. Trump and Mrs. Clinton, and he intends to conduct another round of polling after the New Hampshire primary on Feb. 9 to gauge whether there is indeed an opening for him, according to two people familiar with his intentions.
Mr. Bloomberg’s aides have sketched out one version of a campaign plan that would have the former mayor, a low-key and cerebral personality, deliver a series of detailed policy speeches, backed by an intense television advertising campaign that would introduce him to voters around the country as a technocratic problem-solver and self-made businessman who understands the economy and who built a bipartisan administration in New York.
On the surface, I would think that Bloomberg would run as a gun-control, abortion-friendly moderate Republican, but I really can't decide if that would draw off more Stepford Wives Republicans sick of Trump/Cruz, or Lefty Dudebro Dems who hate Hillary and are eyeing Trump because of his billionaire status.
The Bloomberg numbers could change wildly if Cruz or Sanders are candidates rather than Clinton or Trump, too. I dunno.
I know the last time this happened back in '92, Democrats won pretty handily, but that was against incumbent Poppy Bush, and both parties lost millions of votes to Ross Perot, Clinton just lost fewer.
Poppy's numbers were about where Obama's are now, upper 40's/low 50's too. I don't know, I'd need more data. My gut tells me Bloomberg would split the "time for a change from the Democrats" vote and Hillary would win, but I dunno if that would happen.
What say you guys?