Michael Bloomberg has flooded U.S. airwaves and social media with messages and ads claiming he’s the best chance to beat Trump. He’s spent more on campaign ads since he launched his campaign in November than his main Democratic rivals have over the last year.
“Number one priority is to get rid of Donald Trump. I’m spending all my money to get rid of Trump,” Bloomberg told Reuters aboard his campaign bus on Saturday, during a nearly 300-mile (483-km) drive across Texas, one of the 14 states that will vote on Super Tuesday on March 3.
“Do you want me to spend more or less? End of story.”
Elizabeth Warren hit out at Bloomberg when he launched his campaign by spending a $37-million (£28.33 million) on TV advertising, accusing the former New York City mayor of trying to buy American democracy.
“These are just political things they say, hoping they catch on and they don’t like me doing it, because it competes with them, not because it’s bad policy,” Bloomberg said.
After entering the race late and missing the first six Democratic debates, Bloomberg generally sits fifth in national public opinion polls behind Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Warren, and then Pete Buttigieg.
But not just the two liberal standard-bearers of Warren and Sanders, all of the four are too liberal to beat Trump, Bloomberg said.
“One of the reasons I’m reasonably confident I could beat Trump is I would be acceptable to the moderate Republicans you have to have,” said Bloomberg, a former Republican who made his fortune selling financial information to Wall Street firms.
“Whether you like it or not, you can’t win the election unless you get moderate Republicans to cross the line. The others are much too liberal for them and they would certainly vote for Donald Trump.”
After a late entry into the race, Bloomberg is skipping the first four Democratic nomination contests in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina all due to take place in February. Instead, he is going on a nationwide campaign to try and capture delegates in later contests such as Texas, which will be the second-largest prize among the 14 Super Tuesday states.