Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who’s considering a presidential bid in 2020, said that there’s “no way” an independent candidate can defeat President TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote Warren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Esper orders ‘After Action Review’ of National Guard’s role in protests MORE.
Bloomberg, a former independent who recently re-registered as a Democrat, said in a Monday statement that it was “no secret” he’d been exploring an independent run. But he argued that the data backs up that it’d be very difficult for an independent to win and ultimately help Trump get reelected.
ADVERTISEMENT“Given the strong pull of partisanship and the realities of the electoral college system, there is no way an independent can win. That is truer today than ever before,” Bloomberg said in a Monday statement.
“In 2020, the great likelihood is that an independent would just split the anti-Trump vote and end up re-electing the President. That’s a risk I refused to run in 2016 and we can’t afford to run it now.”
Bloomberg’s comments come after former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said he’s “seriously considering” a 2020 run as a “centrist independent.” Schultz garnered pushback on social media about an independent bid, including from Washington state’s Democratic Party, but said he’s “unfazed” by the criticism.
“This moment is like no other,” Schultz tweeted on Sunday. “Our two parties are more divided than ever. Let’s discuss how we can come together to create opportunities for more people. #ReimagineUS.”
Bloomberg, a New York billionaire, spent more than $100 million trying to help Democrats get elected in the 2018 midterms and take back the House.
He has said he’d likely spent north of $100 million on a presidential run and not accept money from any outside groups.