Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who appears to be gearing up for a potential leap into 2020 presidential election in an already-large field of candidates, will reportedly not accept any campaign donations and taking a page out of President Donald Trump‘s playbook, he will also not accept a presidential salary if elected to the White House.
According to The Hill, Howard Wolfson, a chief adviser for the 77-year-old businessman, made the claim that Bloomberg isn’t interested in outside money in a potential run for the presidency.
“He has never taken a political contribution in his life. He is not about to start,” Wolfson said. “He cannot be bought.”
Though the New York City multi-billionaire has been highly criticized by some of the leading 2020 Democratic presidential candidates for his vast riches, Wolfson argued that Bloomberg’s ability to use his own money for the campaign and beyond makes him an independent of special interests, unlike candidates hurting for cash who might consider giving in.
Wolfson said Bloomberg “is wholly independent of special interests, will not take a dime in any contribution, and never has in any of his three races.”
Doubling down, Bloomberg is also reportedly ready to spend “whatever it takes to beat Donald Trump,” which is not a claim any other top-tier candidate can make from a campaign war chest perspective.
Though Bloomberg certainly has the cash on hand to make a serious run for the job, jumping in this late would still leave him lightyears behind other candidates from a voter’s perspective, especially in crucial battleground states like Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina.
But even that hurdle could theoretically be overcome with enough greenbacks, as Bloomberg recently grabbed headlines after it was revealed that he purchased an astonishing $31.5 million ad buy in several key states. Still, that’s a small chunk of change, given his reported net worth of $54 billion.
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who along with Sen. Elizabeth Warren make up the ranks of the most progressive of the 2020 Democratic lineup and most vocal against billionaires in general, came out strong in his attacks against Bloomberg’s possible entrance, as previously reported by The Inquisitr.
“I’m disgusted by the idea that Michael Bloomberg or any other billionaire thinks they can circumvent the political process and spend tens of millions of dollars to buy our elections,” Sanders said in a recent statement.
Sanders argued that any candidate unable to build a grassroots movement for their campaign and who is only relying on big money to play the game doesn’t have any business running for the presidency.
Given Bloomberg’s centrist approach to politics, Sanders and Warren could be on the receiving end of an eventual barrage of attack ads by the former mayor.