Report: Bloomberg prepping presidential run like 'Ross Perot on steroids'
Rumored to be ready to dedicate $1 billion to an independent bid for the presidency, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been compared to "Ross Perot on steroids," according to a report in Tuesday's Washington Times.
"Bloomberg is H. Ross Perot on steroids," former Federal Election Commission Chairman Michael Toner told the paper's Ralph Z. Hallow. "He could turn the political landscape of this election upside down, spend as much money as he wanted and proceed directly to the general election."
Toner was commenting on rumors from friends of Bloomberg that the Republican Mayor, who made billions before being elected with his Bloomberg News service, could dedicate a substantial portion of his fortune to an independent bid for the presidency.
"He has set aside $1 billion to go for it," Hallow reported a long-time business adviser to the Republican mayor as saying. "The thinking about where it will come from and do we have it is over, and the answer is yes, we can do it."
Bloomberg recently raised eyebrows when he had a private dinner with Senator Chuck Hagel, the Nebraska Republican who has suggested that he is contemplating an independent run for the presidency in 2008.
The Bloomberg friend went as far to say that the socially liberal Republican Mayor is consulting members of the campaign team that helped elevate Perot, a Texas business magnate, as a serious contender in the 1992 presidential election.
"Mike has been meeting with Ross Perot's most senior people about how they did an independent run in 1992," Hallow reported him saying.
Perot siphoned off close to 19% of the popular vote in 1992. In spite of failing to win any electoral votes, his performance helped Bill Clinton take the presidency from incumbent George H.W. Bush.
The full article is available at the Washington Times website.