That Time Bloomberg Said He Would Only Run for President of His Block Association

“I’m 75 years old. It’d be an age issue.”

Mike Bloomberg on 60 Minutes in 2017.

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In 2017, Mike Bloomberg thought he was too old to run for president of anything more than his block association.

In an interview with 60 Minutes, Bloomberg was asked whether he would consider running for president, after contemplating a run as an independent in 2016. “Well, I’m 75 years old,” he responded. “It’d be an age issue, I suppose. I’ve got plenty of things to do. And maybe I’ll run for president of my block association, but not much more than that.”

He also conceded that he felt like a run was a long shot. “I was mayor for a long time,” he said. “People know where I stand. I couldn’t pretend to be something I’m not. For the Republicans, I’m pro-choice, pro-gay rights, pro-immigration. That’s a good start there. You’ll never get their nomination. On the Democratic side, I believe in teacher evaluation. The big banks, we need to help them rather than just keep trying to tear them down. Those are not particularly things that will help you get the nomination.”

Bloomberg was also asked about a speech he gave at the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, where he said of Republican nominee Donald Trump, “I’m a New Yorker, and I know a con when I see one.” But that didn’t make things too awkward between the two New York billionaires: Bloomberg called Trump and congratulated him after he won the 2016 election. “We joked about my speech in Philadelphia,” Bloomberg said on 60 Minutes. “And before he finished the conversation, he gave me his personal phone number, his cell phone. I haven’t called him, so I don’t know if—whether he’d answer it now. But he’s—I hope he does a good job.” 

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And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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