Reports are circulating that New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg is thinking about running as an independent for President of the United States. Someone needs to sit him down to contact John Lindsay from the grave (or for that matter, his predecessor, Rudy Giuliani).
Could he do it? One of the reasons that Governor Tom Vilsack withdrew from the presidential race (and endorsed Hillary Clinton) was that he didn't have enough money to sustain his candidacy. Mayor Mike? Not a problem, as Bloomberg currently sits at No. 142 on the Forbes list of the worlds richest people and is reportedly worth at least $5.5 billion. He is also not afraid to spend his money. In his recent reelection bid for Mayor, he spent $85 million against an opponent that was not likely to win anyway.
Who would he appeal to? Bloomberg used to be a Democrat, turning Republican late in life (perhaps it was all that money). So he could draw support from both parties to an independent candidacy.
What about those other people? The two main parties have the process locked up and third party candidacies very rarely get anywhere (see: Ralph Nader, Ross Perot). Bloomberg is publicly silent on the issue, but the idea is coming out from Bloomberg's media empire that he is considering it.
Unity08 was founded to help the "center" gain a voice and is planning to hold a "unity" primary to nominate a bipartisan ticket for the White House. The group was founded by several heavy hitters, including Hamilton Jordan, who served as President Jimmy Carter's Chief of Staff.
The question remains, one that Bloomberg himself is asking, can a "5-foot-7, divorced billionaire Jew running as an independent from New York possibly have a chance?"
For 2008, as we have already seen . . . All bets are off.