On Sunday night, former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz revealed he's "strongly considering" a 2020 run as a "centrist independent." Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg had a quick wakeup call in response.
In a brief Monday statement, the Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat didn't mention Schultz's name. But his insistence that "an independent would just split the anti-Trump vote and end up re-electing" President Trump couldn't be more clear. When Bloomberg considered an independent run in 2016, he said "the data was very clear and very consistent. Given the strong pull of partisanship and the realities of the electoral college system, there is no way an independent can win." And today, when "the stakes couldn't be higher," Bloomberg said, "we can't afford to run" the "risk" of another Trump presidency.
Bloomberg was an independent himself up until late last year, when he announced he'd registered as a Democrat. That change coincided with Bloomberg's $100 million donation to Democrats in the 2016 midterms, and suggests Bloomberg is considering a 2020 run as well. Read Bloomberg's whole statement here.
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