NY Times columnist Thomas Friedman ‘glad’ Bloomberg might enter 2020 race: ‘Billionaire’ should not be a disqualifier

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New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman wrote that he is “glad” that Michael Bloomberg is considering a 2020 presidential campaign, saying that “billionaire” should not be a “disqualifying status” for liberal Democrats.

“I have no idea whether Michael Bloomberg can win the Democratic nomination, but I’m glad that he’s joining the race,” Friedman wrote in a column entitled “Why I like Mike” before noting that the billionaire businessman had donated to his wife’s museum. “(Disclosure: Bloomberg Philanthropies has contributed to Planet Word, the museum my wife is building in Washington, to promote reading and literacy.)”

{mosads}Friedman is married to Ann Friedman, daughter of late billionaire real estate tycoon Matthew Bucksbaum.

“Today ‘billionaire’ has become a dirty word and a disqualifying status for many in the left of the Democratic Party,” Friedman continued. “To me, that is as nonsensical as dismissing Elizabeth Warren as a ‘communist’ who wants only to confiscate your money.”

“Bloomberg is not just some wealthy dude who made his money betting on derivatives on Wall Street and now pops off about the need to cut taxes,” he added. “Bloomberg is someone who risked everything he had to start a business that took on giant incumbents and outperformed them and boosted productivity.”

“It was ‘billionaire’ Bloomberg who funded the most radical and progressive green agenda of this era,” Friedman also noted. “So I’m glad Bloomberg may enter the race, because he will forcefully put a Democratic pro-growth, pro-innovation, pro-business agenda on the table, while also pushing ahead on major social issues.”

Bloomberg, 77, has not officially declared his 2020 candidacy.

The former three-term mayor of New York City has filed the paperwork to get his name on the ballot in Alabama and Arkansas, moves suggesting he’s moving toward a presidential bid after initially deciding against a White House run. 

A Morning Consult/Politico poll released Tuesday shows Bloomberg leading President Trump by 6 percentage points in a hypothetical 2020 matchup.

Friedman’s latest column was criticized by some on social media for not being transparent enough by not sharing that his wife, like Bloomberg, is also a billionaire.


Tags Donald Trump Elizabeth Warren Michael Bloomberg

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