Election 2020
Portrait of Mike Bloomberg
Portrait of Mike Bloomberg

Mike Bloomberg

Democratic candidate

Bloomberg was a late entrant into the race, launching his campaign Nov. 24 with a plan to do something no successful presidential candidate has ever done: skip the first four states and spend hundreds of millions of dollars to gain support on Super Tuesday. In addition to trying to win the Democratic Party’s nomination, Bloomberg is also spending big on a general election effort to help ensure President Trump loses in November. He’s hired hundreds of employees to quickly build out campaign operations and get ads in front of voters.

Bloomberg, 78, is one of the world’s richest people and former mayor of New York, where he was elected as a Republican and independent but never a Democrat. Since leaving office, he’s poured money into philanthropic efforts to combat gun violence and climate change. The company Bloomberg founded, which helped make him a billionaire, started out providing real-time financial data to Wall Street firms and has expanded to include a news operation as well.

In depth

Mike Bloomberg’s money buys him a very different kind of campaign. And it’s a big one. What rules about how a campaign should look apply? No one knows.

Isaac Stanley-Becker and Michael Scherer | Dec. 7 , 2019 | 11 minutes

Mike Bloomberg wants to be president, but he also has a fallback plan: Defeat Trump and remake the Democratic Party The billionaire is moving to transform a party.

Michael Scherer | Jan. 13, 2020 | 9 minutes

Bloomberg’s business in China has grown. That could create unprecedented entanglements if he is elected president. He’s forged close financial ties and showered praise on Communist Party leaders there.

Michael Kranish | Jan. 1, 2020 | 12 minutes

Climate change

Bloomberg has been involved in efforts to combat climate change, including as a founder of an effort to push cities and states to meet the goals of the Paris climate agreement after Trump withdrew from the deal. He says his top priority as president would be stopping the use of fossil fuel and creating emissions goals that are more aggressive than those set by the Paris deal. He says he supports carbon pricing and the elimination of fossil fuel subsidies. Bloomberg does not support a complete ban on fracking or fossil fuel exports, saying both should be allowed with proper standards applied.

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Education

Bloomberg has said the government should improve access to higher education and lower the debt burden but has not come out in support of free college. He supports canceling some tuition debt based on income. In a 2019 speech prior to announcing his candidacy, Bloomberg said charter schools can be a good alternative to traditional public schools, as long as they have strong accountability measures.

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Foreign policy

Bloomberg has said there would be no U.S. troops in Afghanistan by the end of his first term and that the government should reassess defense spending levels. He supports ratification of the USMCA, the trade agreement to replace NAFTA, and said he would be open to joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership if adjustments are made. Bloomberg said he supports a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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Government

He does not favor eliminating the electoral college or adding seats to the Supreme Court. On his campaign website, he said he’d require each state to draw congressional districts via independent commissions. Bloomberg touted efforts to make it easy to register to vote while he was mayor of New York and said he supports restoring voting rights for formerly incarcerated people. Like the rest of the field, he supports statehood for Washington, D.C.

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Health care

Bloomberg says the first step in changing the health-care system is creating a public option, government-provided insurance that gives priority to low-income people who are uninsured. His campaign website touts expanding Medicare and Obamacare but does not specify whether the eligibility age for Medicare should be dropped. He has warned that government-run health care would “bankrupt us for a very long time.” Bloomberg’s health plan says he “would work with Congress to authorize the secretary of Health and Human Services to negotiate drug prices with pharmaceutical companies.”

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Immigration

Bloomberg says he supports focusing deportation efforts on criminals and national security threats and would return refugee acceptance to Obama administration levels. He also backs a path to citizenship for many undocumented immigrants. He touts his work as mayor of making more services accessible to immigrants, including not reporting undocumented immigrants and providing translations.

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