| Guide to:|
|Hail to the Chief?|
|Persons of interest|
Michael R. Bloomberg (born 1942) is a
Democrat Republican independent Democrat, the 12th richest man in the United States, and was the 108th Mayor of New York City from 2002 to 2013. His annual salary as mayor was $1.
Bloomberg attended Johns Hopkins (where there is now a Bloomberg School of Public Health) and Harvard University before being elected mayor of New York in November 2001. He is also a well-known philanthropist and businessman. He started Bloomberg LP in 1981 and even has his own news channel.
There was speculation about a possible bid for the 2008 U.S. presidential election. He said no. There was also speculation that he would try to run for Governor of New York in 2010. He said no. There was some more speculation that he would seek the presidency in 2012. He said no. Then there was even more speculation that he would seek the presidency in 2016. He said no... again. He finally threw his hat in the ring in 2020.
Head-scratching attempts at bipartisanship
Bloomberg seemingly cannot make up his mind any more than he can make up his mind about which political party he is a member of. His mayoralty saw a list of policies arguably more diverse than the demographics of the city he was mayor of:
- On the liberal side, he's pro-choice, opposes the death penalty, supports stem cell research, same-sex marriage, and gun control, didn't suck up to the Park51 hysteria, is staunchly pro-immigration reform and drastically expanded funding on education, global warming mitigation, and affordable housing. Balanced budgets were achieved by a series of tax increases, something even many Dems can't do. He also made a big push for public health, to the point of trying to ban large soda containers from restaurants — something that has earned him no end of ribbing from the likes of Jon Stewart. Supported Obama in 2012 and Clinton in 2016.
- On the conservative side, he is staunchly anti-union, advocated for Dubya's re-election in 2004 and the extension of the PATRIOT Act, whined about the end of the Iraq War, backpedalled on ending the War on Drugs.
This mixing of left and right-wing politics gets more confusing in regards to economics (ie. defending welfare and fiscal moderacy at a Tory conference despite his cozying up to certain embarrassing financial institutions and opposing an early version of the Zadroga Bill because "there's no free lunch"). Basically, WTFs all round, and in the post-recession era, his opinion polling took some hits.
In short, he is an avatar of the centrist business wing of the Democratic Party. He's a former Republican who was put off by his party's embrace of religious conservatism and populist nationalism long before it was cool, but while he agrees with the Democrats on social issues and the need to combat climate change, he distrusts the party's economic justice wing.
Occupy Wall Street
Long story short, Bloomberg is a bit of a dick who thought he had his own personal "army." He cracked down on the protesters rather violently, to the point where the cops in New York City set up a surveillance system meant to gather information on the protesters and shared what they gathered to banks.
- Who Makes How Much, New York Magazine
- Stop it!
- Bloomberg says he won't run for President in 2016.
- Goldenberg, Sally. "Michael Bloomberg launches campaign for president." Politico, 24 November 2019 (recovered 24 November 2019).
- Jon Stewart compares the discrepancy between the state of New York's marijuana liberalization and Bloomberg's crackdown on large soft drinks.
- NY Mayor Bloomberg Endorses Obama in Presidential Race, Bloomberg
- "Being a fiscal conservative is not about slashing programs that help the poor, or improve health care, or ensure a social safety net..."
- What do you think?
- Bloomberg peddles the "Fannie and Freddie caused 2008" myth
- Pataki Signs Law Increasing Death Benefits for Ground Zero Workers, The New York Times
- A better New York City? 6 takes on Michael Bloomberg's legacy, The Week
- Bloomberg's "Own Army," "Smoked Up" Speech Raises Eyebrows, NBC
- F.B.I. Counterterrorism Agents Monitored Occupy Movement, Records Show, The New York Times