Ignore the Signals. Bloomberg Isn’t a Sound Investment.
Published in The Washington Post
on February 19, 2020
Political pundits are abuzz about former New York mayor Mike Bloomberg’s supposedly rising chances to win the Democratic nomination. Savvy market watchers see something different: a bubble getting ready to burst.
Bloomberg’s rise is fueled entirely by his unprecedented level of campaign spending. The multibillionaire has poured more than $340 million into campaign advertising so far, and millions more on staff, polling and travel. No one has ever spent so much, so quickly in a presidential primary. Bloomberg’s massive $62 billion net worth means he can spend whatever it takes to win.
Despite that, Bloomberg has yet to lead any national polls in the race so far. Indeed, he remains behind former vice president Joe Biden’s struggling campaign and barely ahead of Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) allegedly faltering effort. He remains more than 10 points behind the leader, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
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Henry Olsen is a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.