(CNN) — Michael Bloomberg officially announced his late-entry Democratic presidential bid on Sunday, unveiling a campaign that the former New York mayor said will be squarely aimed at defeating President Donald Trump.
Bloomberg, in a letter explaining his candidacy on his campaign website, lays out a more moderate vision for the country and casts himself as “a doer and a problem solver – not a talker.”
“I’m running for president to defeat Donald Trump and rebuild America. We cannot afford four more years of President Trump’s reckless and unethical actions,” Bloomberg wrote.
Bloomberg’s late 2020 bid – along with the money the billionaire can spend to fund his campaign – injects a new level of uncertainty into the race less than three months before the first voting in the race begins. In the last several days there was little doubt he was running.
Bloomberg, who had said earlier this year that he would not run, reversed his decision because he doesn’t think there’s a candidate in the current field of Democrats who can beat Trump next November, several people close to the former mayor told CNN. That includes former Vice President Joe Biden, who Bloomberg has watched fade in Iowa polling and struggle with fundraising.
Bloomberg is not the first late entry candidate to get into the race. Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick also announced earlier this month that he, too, would run for the Democratic nomination.
To kick start his campaign, Bloomberg has placed at least $37 million worth of television advertising over the next two weeks, according to data from Kantar Media/CMAG.
The ads highlight the mayor’s biography – “He could have just been the middle class kid… but Mike Bloomberg became the guy who did good,” said the ad – and his post-mayoral work on combating climate change, Then the spot turns to Trump, saying now the mayor is “taking on him” as an image of Trump freezes on screen.
The spot ends with narrator saying “Mike Bloomberg for President” with Bloomberg saying “I’m Mike Bloomberg and I approve this message.”
Bloomberg’s massive buy – 60 seconds spots across some 100 markets – will begin next week, representing more than the entire Democratic field has spent on TV advertising in the race so far, excluding businessman Tom Steyer, who will have aired nearly $63 million of TV ads by the end of Bloomberg’s initial bookings.
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