President Trump on Friday dismissed reports that former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg will run for president as a Democrat, telling reporters that he’s unthreatened by the former New York City mayor’s candidacy.
“He’s not going to do well but I think he’s going to hurt Biden actually,” Trump told reporters. “There’s nobody I’d rather run against than little Michael.”
Bloomberg has been considering a presidential run for some time. In October the New York Times reported that Bloomberg said he would enter the primary race if he thought he could win, but at the time he wasn’t sure of his prospects.
On Thursday the Times indicated Bloomberg would file the necessary paperwork this coming week to enter the Alabama presidential primary.
“He doesn’t have the magic to do well,” Trump said of Bloomberg. “Little Michael will fail.”
Bloomberg would enter an already crowded Democratic primary field. Establishment Democratic donors and politicians have expressed fears there is no centrist candidate to present a strong challenge to Trump in the 2020 general election, a void Bloomberg now hopes to fill.
The former mayor would compete with Joe Biden for centrist voters. Biden is currently facing strong challengers in Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, both of whom advocate sweeping progressive policies including universal health care and have promised to impose heavy taxes on wealthy individuals and corporations.
Bloomberg was criticized after saying in a September interview that Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping was not a dictator.
“The Communist Party wants to stay in power in China, and they listen to the public,” Bloomberg said. “Xi Jinping is not a dictator. He has to satisfy his constituents or he’s not going to survive.”
The former mayor is a staunch supporter of gun control, and founded his own advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety, which contributes to politicians who advocate for stricter gun control measures.