A new survey released by GOP pollster Frank Luntz on Thursday finds that former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is contemplating a White House bid, would have a shot at winning the presidency as a third-party candidate.
“If Michael Bloomberg decides to run for president as an independent candidate, he will begin the campaign just a handful of points behind the front-runners from BOTH political parties,” Luntz said in a statement accompanying the poll.
In one match-up, Bloomberg receives 29 percent of the vote, compared to Republican primary front-runner Donald TrumpDonald TrumpRyan has little margin for error in Speaker vote Clinton faces new challenges on ObamaCare House Republican group raised more than M in October MORE’s 37 percent support and Democratic primary front-runner Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonClinton faces new challenges on ObamaCare House Republican group raised more than M in October Chaffetz says he'll vote for Trump MORE’s 33 percent support.
In a race against Clinton and Republican primary hopeful Ted Cruz, Bloomberg receives 28 percent of the vote, compared to Clinton’s 37 percent and Cruz’s 35 percent.
And in a scenario in which Republican primary hopeful Marco Rubio wins his party's nomination, Bloomberg receives 28 percent of the vote, compared to Rubio’s 38 percent and Clinton’s 35 percent.
These results, according to Luntz, give Bloomberg a real shot at mounting a successful White House run.
“The key takeaway? There’s more than a political lane available to the former mayor; it’s an interstate highway,” he said.
The poll also finds that when either Trump or Cruz is the GOP nominee, Bloomberg draws more support from Republicans than from Democrats, winning 26 and 23 percent of GOP voters, respectively.
When Rubio is the GOP nominee, only 18 percent of Republicans defect to support the former mayor.
Bloomberg consistently draws 18 or 19 percent of the Democratic vote from Clinton.
The poll did not measure how Bloomberg does in a three-way race where presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders is the Democratic nominee.
The Luntz poll surveyed 900 likely voters from Jan. 26 – 27 and has a margin of error of 3.3 percent.
Bloomberg, 73, has said he is willing to spend $1 billion of his fortune in the run for the White House.
The businessman will reportedly decide whether to enter the race by March.