Michael Bloomberg is buying a $10 million Super Bowl ad to get 'under Trump's skin'

Michael Bloomberg.
(Image credit: Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is continuing his campaign spending spree with a Super Bowl ad specifically intended to make President Trump mad.

The Bloomberg campaign has purchased a 60-second Super Bowl spot that will air nationally during the game and is expected to have cost at least $10 million, The New York Times reports. Trump's campaign was reportedly eyeing a Super Bowl ad of its own, though that one's only expected to be 30 seconds. Bloomberg's ad reportedly will be specifically anti-Trump and not just focused on Bloomberg's own biography.

The "biggest point" of this, a spokesperson for Bloomberg's campaign told the Times, is "getting under Trump's skin." The spokesperson also suggested the campaign wants to show it has the spending power to make such a large purchase, telling the Times, "We have the means to raise a national campaign unlike any other candidate."

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Within weeks of making a late entry into the Democratic primary, Bloomberg, whose net worth is north of $50 billion, had spent about $120 million on advertising, more than double what every other non-billionaire in the race spent the entire year combined, Politico reports. Former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, for example, has spent around $19 million on advertising as of last month, just $9 million more than Bloomberg is expected to drop on this single commercial.

Other 2020 Democratic candidates have criticized Bloomberg's spending spree. "We do not believe that billionaires have the right to buy elections," said Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) after the former mayor entered the race in November. "That is why multibillionaires like Mr. Bloomberg are not going to get very far in this election." Bloomberg has yet to qualify for any of the Democratic presidential debates.

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Brendan Morrow

Brendan is a staff writer at The Week. A graduate of Hofstra University with a degree in journalism, he also writes about horror films for Bloody Disgusting and has previously contributed to The Cheat Sheet, Heavy, WhatCulture, and more. He lives in New York City surrounded by Star Wars posters.