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Opinion

Opinion: Michael who? Readers yawn at Bloomberg’s presidential candidacy

Michael Bloomberg in 2013
Former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg in 2013.
(Keith Bedford / EPA)

After one of the only plausible things that could significantly shake up the Democratic primary happened last week -- Michael R. Bloomberg’s entry into the race -- I waited for the crush of letters that typically follows a high-profile candidacy kickoff.

And then I waited some more.

Turns out I may have to keep waiting, because since the former New York City mayor (and Republican) filed papers on Nov. 8 to insert his name on the Alabama primary ballot, fewer than a dozen readers sent us letters discussing Bloomberg’s candidacy. Two of the submissions were bullish on Bloomberg; the rest were not.

Lisa Harmon of Yakima, Wash., says Bloomberg pushes her left:

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When Bill Gates starts doing the math on a wealth tax and Bloomberg suddenly jumps into the race, you know something’s amiss.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s place in the polls has billionaires worried. I doubt Bloomberg’s entry into the race is about “concern” over the field of candidates. It’s more likely about the preservation of class, wealth and the status quo.

This Bloomberg news now makes me move toward voting for Warren (my reluctant choice), away from Joe Biden (my required choice) and still further from Pete Buttigieg (my actual choice).

Marilyn Perenchio of North Hills is impressed by Bloomberg:

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I once saw Bloomberg in a panel discussion. Asked about being fired from his first job, he recalled that he said to himself, “It is what it is, now what are you going to do about it?”

This attitude exemplifies a quality I want in a president: There’s no lamenting what could have been, but only looking ahead to what can be done to solve the problem.

Bloomberg is a foe of global warming. If you can’t breathe the air, drink the water or grow food on your land, what good is anything else? He promotes gun control, putting people’s lives ahead of profits for gun manufacturers.

This guy is a no-nonsense, look-at-the-problem-and-fix-it kind of guy who cares about the country. And with his money, he’s beholden to no one.

I’d vote for him.

R.J. Godin of Berkeley doesn’t want a recent ex-Republican in the Democratic race:

Does the Democratic Party allow anyone to campaign for its nomination?

Bloomberg was a lifelong (and he has had a long one) Republican who just switched to Democratic last year. Why would the party allow him to campaign for the top of its ticket?

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If Bloomberg is that interested in running for president, then why not do so as a Republican?

Robert Matano of Cayucos, Calif., anticipates an all-billionaire debate:

It would be very interesting to see Bloomberg as the Democratic nominee, President Trump as the Republican and, say, Tom Steyer as the Green Party nominee. I can just see the debate conversation:

“I know what is best for billionaires,” says Trump. “No you don’t,” says Steyer. “You are both wrong,” says Bloomberg.


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