Michael Bloomberg dropped out of the presidential race on March 4, 2020. This page is no longer being updated.
Bloomberg made a late entry into the 2020 Democratic race in November 2019, offering a more moderate vision for the country and casting himself as a problem solver. He served as New York City’s mayor from 2002 to 2013 and is the co-founder, CEO, and owner of Bloomberg L.P., a privately-held financial, software, data, and media company.
Here is a look at the life of Michael Bloomberg, former New York mayor and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate. Personal Birth date: February 14, 1942 Birth place: Boston, Massachusetts Birth name: Michael Rubens Bloomberg Father: William Henry Bloomberg, bookkeeper Mother: Charlotte (Rubens) Bloomberg, office manager Marriage: Susan Brown (1976-1993, divorced) Children: Georgina, 1983; Emma, 1979 Education: Johns Hopkins University, B.S. in electrical engineering, 1964; Harvard Business School, M.B.A., 1966 Religion: Jewish Other Facts One of four New York City mayors to serve three terms. Left the Democratic party in 2001 and won his first two mayoral terms as a Republican. His third mayoral term was won as an independent, and then he rejoined the Democratic party in 2018. Diana Taylor has been his companion for 20 years. As mayor of New York, Bloomberg made sweeping changes to city schools, transportation, including extending subway lines, and public health, implementing extensive regulations targeting smoking and obesity. Since 2006, Bloomberg Philanthropies, an umbrella organization of Bloomberg's charities which includes the nonprofit Bloomberg Family Foundation, has donated billions to political interests and causes such as education, the environment and public health. Timeline 1966-1981 - Works as a clerk, and later partner at Salomon Brothers in New York. 1981 - Co-founds Bloomberg L.P. (formerly Innovative Market Systems) using a $10 million partnership buyout from Salomon Brothers. 1982 - Creates the Bloomberg terminal, a software system with a specialized keyboard used by financial professionals to trade stocks electronically and access live market data. 1990 - Co-founds Bloomberg News (formerly Bloomberg Business News). 1994 - Launches Bloomberg Television (formerly Bloomberg Information TV). 1996-2002 - Serves as chairman of the Johns Hopkins University's board of trustees. 1997 - His memoir, "Bloomberg by Bloomberg," is published. November 6, 2001 - Is elected mayor of New York. November 8, 2005 - Is elected to a second term. November 3, 2009 - Is elected to a third term after spending more than $100 million on his reelection campaign. In October, the New York City Council voted to extend the city's mayoral term limits from two four-year terms to three. May 2012 - Announces a proposal to ban the sale of sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces at restaurants, food carts and any other establishments that receive letter grades for food service. On June 26, 2014, New York's Court of Appeals rules that New York City's ban on large sugary drinks, which was previously blocked by lower courts, is illegal. July 27, 2016 - Endorses Hillary Clinton for president at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. November 24, 2019 - Announces his late-entry Democratic presidential bid, unveiling a campaign squarely aimed at defeating President Donald Trump. November 24, 2019 - Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait releases a statement addressing how the network will cover the 2020 presidential campaign and reveals that it will not investigate Bloomberg or any other Democratic candidates. February 10, 2020 - Audio is posted online of Bloomberg from 2015, defending his use of "stop and frisk" as mayor by describing the policy as a way to reduce violence by throwing minority kids "up against the walls and frisk[ing] them." Bloomberg later says his 2015 comments about the controversial stop and frisk policing policy do not reflect the way he thinks or the way he led as mayor of New York City. February 18, 2020 - Qualifies for his first Democratic presidential debate, by polling four times at or above 10% nationally. February 18, 2020 - A campaign adviser tells CNN that Bloomberg would sell his financial information and media company if he's elected president, in an effort to be "180 degrees away from where Donald Trump is on these issues." February 19, 2020 - Faces criticism in first presidential debate from other Democratic candidates regarding campaign spending, his record on policing tactics as mayor of New York and misogynistic comments he allegedly made about women at his company in the 1980s and 1990s. March 4, 2020 - Ends his presidential campaign and endorses Joe Biden. September 3, 2020 - Bloomberg's charity, Bloomberg Philanthropies, announces he is donating $100 million to the nation's four historically Black medical schools to help ease the student debt burden for the next generation of Black physicians. September 25, 2020 - Bloomberg announces $40 million in TV ads supporting Biden statewide in Florida.
Bloomberg said, if elected, he would make climate a top priority. The US would rejoin the Paris climate accord, the landmark 2015 global agreement on global warming targets. He has said he wants the US to create a clean energy economy and has vowed to create renewable energy jobs. Previously, he worked as the UN secretary-general’s special envoy for climate action, and he has worked with cities, states and businesses to address the climate crisis.
Bloomberg has vowed to create a housing proposal and an earned income tax credit to provide economic opportunity for all Americans. His housing proposal would expand funding for the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, and would increase federal spending for programs like the Public Housing Capital Fund, the HOME program and Community Development Block Grants. He proposes revising the Earned Income Tax Credit and raising the incomes of low-wage workers. By 2025, he wants to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Bloombergwrote in an op-ed in December 2017 that, in order to achieve revenue-neutral tax restructuring, he was in favor of reducing the 35% corporate tax rate. He criticized President Donald Trump’s 2017 tax overhaul as an “economically indefensible blunder that will harm our future.”
Bloomberg would make it a top national priority to increase student achievement, college preparedness and career readiness. He says he leads national efforts to increase the number of lower-income students enrolled in top colleges, and that as mayor, he strengthened standards and created more quality school options. He says he increased graduation rates, increased the education budget and opened new schools. While he was mayor of New York, a state law placed the New York public school system under mayoral control. Bloomberg supported the move, and used the power to open new schools, champion charter schools and close poor-performing schools. He was often at odds with the United Federation of Teachers.
In 2014, Bloomberg pledged to spend $50 million to build a nationwide grassroots network to combat the National Rifle Association. He founded the umbrella group Everytown for Gun Safety, which brought together groups he already funded: Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. A goal of the groups was to try to “expand the background check system for gun buyers both at the state and national levels,” according to The New York Times. If elected, Bloomberg says, he would continue to back common-sense gun policies. More on Bloomberg’s gun violence policy
Bloomberg said the US should expand Obamacare and Medicare in order to achieve universal coverage. His campaign website reads: “As a mayor, businessman, and philanthropist, Mike has pioneered bold health initiatives that have cleaned the air we breathe, expanded access to prenatal and postnatal care, increased screenings for breast and prostate cancer, dramatically cut teen smoking, and reduced injuries and deaths on roads.” Bloomberg said “Medicare for All” would “bankrupt us for a very long time,” The New York Times reported in January 2019. “I think you could never afford that. You’re talking about trillions of dollars,” he said of the single-payer health plan. As mayor, Bloomberg pushed for New York City to ban smoking in all restaurants and bars and for big soft drinks to be banned.
Bloomberg founded New American Economy, a pro-immigration coalition of business leaders and mayors that aims to reach the public and policymakers. In 2018, the group targeted senators with a TV and phone campaign to urge them to protect so-called Dreamers, undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children.
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Republican vaccine shift too late to halt Covid surge
Updated 8:17 AM ET, Mon Jul 26, 2021
Social, moral and political pressure is beginning to build on tens of millions of Americans who decline to take safe, effective vaccines against Covid-19, as even some conservative politicians join the persuasion effort amid a dangerous new wave. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top government infectious diseases expert, bluntly warned on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday the pandemic is "going in the wrong direction" because 50% of the country is not fully vaccinated. Fauci, one of the world's most respected public health experts, has been demonized by conservative attacks. But as the Delta variant scythes through the unvaccinated heartland, a handful of conservative leaders are now mirroring his plea for holdouts to get their shots to save their lives. But polling shows that many Americans in conservative states remain deeply skeptical of the vaccine and many intend never to take it, or are highly unlikely to change their minds as the virus -- and a highly contagious variant -- begins to deepen its terrible toll. That reality is causing recalculations inside the White House about a crisis many of President Joe Biden's top aides had hoped was all but over. Top officials are discussing the possibility of reviving mask guidance for vaccinated citizens in some areas where the virus is raging particularly severely. The prospect of another brutal fall and winter in the pandemic also threatens to detract from the President's ambitious agenda, haunt his presidency and damage the economic recovery heading into midterm elections that were already a tough challenge. Fauci said on "State of the Union" that the vast majority of American deaths in a worsening pandemic would come among those who have delayed getting their injections. "This is an issue predominantly among the unvaccinated, which is the reason why we're out there, practically pleading with the unvaccinated people to go out and get vaccinated," he told Jake Tapper. New political divides The vaccine drive has yet again taken the lid off fundamental political divisions in the United States that remain raw after ex-President Donald Trump prioritized his political prospects over public health guidelines last year. Some conservative commentators and politicians have falsely accused the Biden administration of trying to forcibly inoculate Americans against their will and dismissed the scientific advice of government experts. There are many reasons why Americans will not get vaccinated, including a belief that the virus is not that bad, the hope that rural lifestyles make catching Covid-19 less likely and general distrust of government experts. But generally, the least vaccinated states that are most at risk amid the current resurgence of Covid-19 were won by Trump in 2020 and are where Republican state and local leaders have been most resistant to social distancing measures. The former President, despite claiming rightful credit for his administration's role in developing highly effective vaccines, did "recommend" to his supporters at a teeming Arizona rally on Saturday that they get their shots. But he also showed that he was unwilling to spend political capital on an issue that might put him at odds with the base voters on whom he relies for a comeback. "I also believe in your freedoms 100%," Trump said, giving indirect blessing to those who spurn the vaccines. He further sabotaged the public health effort by claiming that the reason people were not taking advantage of it was because of his successor. "Because they don't trust the President, people aren't doing it," Trump said. No one has sowed more distrust in the Biden administration than Trump himself with his endless and false claims of election fraud. There is a risk to upping pressure on Americans who are reluctant to get vaccinated. Millions of conservative voters turned to Trump because they believed they were being victimized by "elite" officials, experts and journalists seeking to impose their views and values on what they saw as their own traditional American cultural customs. This impression, fostered by years of conservative media propaganda, could provide another rich pool of anger for the ex-President to exploit if it is deepened by new vaccine controversies. As with masking, the issue of vaccines gets to the core question of American freedoms and the extent to which an individual's interests should remain sacrosanct even if their actions put the rest of the community at risk. Vaccine skeptics argue that the government should have no power to prevent them visiting their favorite bar or restaurant, whatever their personal choice on the vaccine. Americans who are vaccinated, however, question why those who won't get the shot are not willing to help end the pandemic for everyone, amid fears that high levels of virus could spawn new variants resistant to vaccines. While public health guidance suggests that most vaccinated Americans are protected from Covid-19, there are breakthrough infections -- even if almost all of those fully vaccinated will not get seriously ill or die. And children under 12, who cannot yet be vaccinated, are vulnerable -- especially in disease hotspots -- as are immunocompromised people who cannot get the vaccine. The likely political price that Biden and other leaders would face in trying to introduce vaccine passports in order to enter restaurants, theaters and other public places, means such an idea is probably a non-starter in the US. In fact, some Republicans -- like Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida, where Covid infections are surging -- have already outlawed such steps. But as the potential toll of the latest Covid surge becomes clear, more conservative leaders are speaking up publicly in support of vaccines — and even conservative media pundits are getting on board after months spewing misinformation about the government vaccine effort. Sanders is latest conservative to urge vaccines Several Republican governors have strongly criticized people in their own states who won't go ahead and get vaccinated, including Kay Ivey of Alabama and Jim Justice of West Virginia. Now, former Trump White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who is running for governor in Arkansas, has publicly joined the pro-vaccine camp with an opinion article in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette newspaper over the weekend. She noted that 98% of those hospitalized in her state and 99% of those who had recently died from Covid were unvaccinated. "Many of our hospitals are now dangerously close to maximum capacity due to rising COVID cases, and the heroic doctors and nurses who have stood on the frontlines of the pandemic need the ability to treat patients with other serious illnesses and emergencies as well," Sanders wrote. But her endorsement of vaccines was preceded by a volley of attacks on Democrats, Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, Fauci and media organizations she accused of damaging confidence in vaccines — even though the conservative media machine has been pushing misinformation for months. It was a reminder of the political hoops that Republican politicians must now navigate in order to take a position based on facts — the effectiveness of vaccines — while trying not being seen as caving into what their constituents perceive as liberal experts and journalists. The GOP governor of Arkansas, Asa Hutchinson, described the reason why the state's new Covid infections are shooting through the roof on "State of the Union." "This is a pivotal moment in our race against the Covid virus. We have school coming up. We have a lot of sports activities that people are expecting and anxious about," Hutchinson told Tapper. "And what's holding us back is a low vaccination rate." But Hutchinson, again revealing the dicey political ground facing Republicans, defended his decision to approve a ban on state and local officials ordering face mask mandates — saying that at the time, the virus was at low levels. "People knew exactly what to do. They were capable of making their decisions," Hutchinson said. The ban passed both chambers of the Arkansas legislature in April and makes exceptions for private business. He did say, however, that conservative principles that allow for local control would allow officials to consider mask mandates, based on vaccination rates. As new cases of Covid-19 rise across the country, Arkansas recorded 11,748 new infections and 56 new deaths over the last week -- a positivity rate of 19.32%, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. While pleading with citizens to get vaccinated for their own good, Hutchinson said that he wouldn't consider a vaccine mandate "because that would even cause a greater reaction of negativity toward the government, and then imposition on freedom." Such reasoning is why such a move on the federal level is also all but unthinkable. A Friday Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll among American adults yet to get a vaccine found that 45% say they will definitely not get the shots and 35% say they probably will not. Such data explains why many experts believe that calls by national political figures like Biden are likely to be ineffective in boosting vaccination rates. Trusted community figures like doctors and faith leaders may have better success in bolstering vaccine take-up. And there may also be a more direct role for businesses and educational organizations. "If someone doesn't want to get vaccinated, I have no desire to hold them down and to force them to be vaccinated but they should make sure that they don't harm others," said Lawrence Gostin, a professor of global health law at Georgetown University. "They either get the jab or they have to get two tests per week; they have to mask up. But we should absolutely make sure that if you make a decision not to be vaccinated that you just have no right to go unmasked and unvaccinated in a crowded work place," Gostin said on "Smerconish" on CNN on Saturday. "We need to make being vaccinated the default, the easy choice."