Bloomberg Jumps From The RebuplicanTitanic
Posted by nytexan on June 19, 2007
Does Bloomberg’s switch mean he’s just as disgusted as the rest of us with Republicans and Democrats or is it prep work to enter the 2008 race?
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is changing his party affiliation from “Republican” to “unaffiliated”, a move certain to fuel talk that he is preparing for an independent run for president in 2008.
“Although my plans for the future haven’t changed, I believe this brings my affiliation into alignment with how I have led and will continue to lead our City,” Bloomberg said in a statement released by his office late this afternoon.
Bloomberg went on to detail some of his accomplishments as mayor, from balancing the budget to reforming schools to making “the nation’s safest city even safer.”
This decision operates on several political levels.
On its face, it makes perfect sense. Bloomberg was never a Republican in any true sense of the word. When he first ran for office in 2001, he decided to do so as a Republican because the Democratic primary was already crowded with well-known candidates. The Republican nomination was his for the taking, and he took it. Then, in the general election he used his vast personal wealth and his pitch to bring a businessman’s sensibility to the job to overcome the city’s strong Democratic leanings. Now that he has been elected to two terms, Bloomberg has no need to remain in a party that he disagrees with on any number of issues.
Below the surface, however, it’s hard to see Bloomberg’s move as anything other than a gambit aimed at 2008. Read in that context, Bloomberg’s statement explaining his decision to leave the Republican Party could well double as the announcement of an independent presidential bid. Doubt us? How about this line: “As a political independent, I will continue to work with those in all political parties to find common ground, to put partisanship aside to achieve real solutions to the challenges we face.”
Poll after poll shows that the American voting public believes politics in Washington is broken and needs an outside hand to fix it. What better candidate than a successful businessman with a history of bipartisan accomplishments in the biggest city in the United States? And did we mention he is a billionaire?