NEW YORK, March 7, 2016 — Former New York City mayor and billionaire Michael Bloomberg has decided against a run for the White House. He made his announcement on the Bloomberg View website, saying that he believes that a campaign could lead to Donald Trump or Senator Ted Cruz becoming President.
“I love our country too much to play a role in electing a candidate who would weaken our unity and darken our future—and so I will not enter the race for president of the United States,” he wrote.
Bloomberg’s decision closes the door on what many considered to be his lifelong ambition. He served three terms as the mayor of New York. He was expected to make a decision in March about whether he would run.
“When I look at the data, it’s clear to me that if I entered the race, I could not win,” he wrote in the letter. “In a three-way race, it’s unlikely any candidate would win a majority of electoral votes, and then the power to choose the president would be taken out of the hands of the American people and thrown to Congress.”
Bloomberg never won much interest from American voters. About 12 percent of likely voters said they would support him in a three-way race for president with Democrat Hillary Clinton and Trump, according to a Reuters/Ipsos national poll conducted from Wednesday to Monday.
Bloomberg had contemplated bids for the White House in 2008 and 2012. Each time, he tapped advisers and political strategists who surrounded him when he was mayor. He would have faced another uphill battle in 2016.
He is largely unknown in many parts of the U.S. Two issues for which he has drawn attention beyond New York—his support for gun control and a failed attempt to limit the size of sodas sold in New York—could have limited his support in the South and elsewhere. Bloomberg also supports abortion rights and is a liberal on many social issues.