Michael Bloomberg, Centrist Democrat?

The New York Times looks at Michael Bloomberg’s views and find that he falls right in the middle. Middle of the Democratic Party that is. Many have gone ballistic over the upcoming bipartisan meeting have centered their attacks on a straw man argument that then are all supporters of a mushy center position on all issues. This article proves they are wrong but hasn’t ended the attacks. Greg Sargent, who is emerging as one of the leading Bloomberg-bashers, calls Bloomberg’s calls for “post-partisanship” “a self-serving, attention-seeking stunt.”

One would think that liberal bloggers would be happy to see that Bloomberg shares their views. The objection is really on a partisan rather than ideological level, demonstrating that Bloomberg has a point in criticizing today’s hyper-partisanship. This only demonstrates further the reason these individuals are meeting. Besides, if a liberal such as Michael Bloomberg can find common ground with the variety of people from both parties who are attending, this could be beneficial. Should moderates such as Christine Todd Whitman ever manage to regain influence in the Republican Party, it is beneficial that they speak with people like Bloomberg who support abortion rights and oppose restrictions on same sex marriage. Maybe others there will get Bloomberg to reconsider some of his nanny state ideas.

The vitriol towards Bloomberg and the others meeting most likely comes from the fear that they will run as a third party, harming the Democrats in the 2008 election. The old argument was that there was no point in Bloomberg running because the mushy center wasn’t a valid platform. Seeing that this is not the case, the new argument is that there is no point in a Bloomberg run because he shares the views of the Democratic Party. The point is that Bloomberg’s views would be at the center of the Democratic Party, which is approximately where the center of the country currently is.

Whether a Bloomberg run makes sense, or has any chance to succeed, depends upon what the Democrats do. If Obama is the nominee, then it makes no sense for Bloomberg to run, and I’ve already noted evidence to suggest that he would not run against Obama, and he wouldn’t have much impact if he did. However, if the Democrats embrace either Edwards’ economic ideas, or the idea that increasing the hyper-partisanship is the way to accomplish their ends, then the Democrats would not be offering a viable choice in the general election and there would be room for another option. My main interest is in the principles someone promotes, not their party affiliation.

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3 Comments

  1. 1
    Andrew MacRae says:

    Mike Bloomberg is simultaneously to the left of democrats on global warming and social policy and to the right of Republicans and responsible spending and free trade. He is the perfect candidate, for more information go to UniteForMike, home of the Draft Bloomberg movement

  2. 2
    Bill says:

    I can’t believe you all support Bloomberg running for a third term. Let’s also change the U.S. Constitution so Arnold Schwarzenegger can run for U.S. President. Where does it stop? Go back and review your lessons from political science 101. It is a sure way to doom the U.S. government if Bloomberg is permitted to change the laws and run for a third term. It’s the first step to formal dictatorship. If that is what the Democrats want then they deserve to lose the U.S. election. Are the Democrats a crony government? Let’s face it, there is no divine predisposition in politics. Wake up, please!

  3. 3
    Ron Chusid says:

    Bill,

    This is a post from last January. It says nothing about supporting Bloomberg’s desire to run for a third term. This was written months before he even came up with the idea. Plus, Bloomberg isn’t a Democrat. He was elected mayor as a Republican and is currently a Democrat so your attempts to use this to smear Democrats are total nonsense.

    You are also using ridiculous hyperbole in comparing removing term limits to dictatorship. Your analogy to allowing Schwarzenegger to run for president is quite a stretch as removing term limits in New York City is quite different from the Constitutional prohibitions which prevent Schwarzenegger from running.

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