To say that the 2020 Democratic race has been listless would be the understatement of the year.
This is the sort of primary race that history has likely warned us about. The first spate of candidates wholly failed in their attempts to capture the imagination of the electorate, paving the way for Joe Biden to come stomping into the fray, immediately jolting himself into the number one spot. Then, as the enthusiasm around the former Vice President began to wane, another few candidates emerged, including billionaire and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg – who is essentially vying for the exact same moderate-centrist demographic as Biden.
Bloomberg, who has expressed tepid interest in the presidency in previous years, went all in this go-round, spending an inordinate amount of his vast fortune in a bid to secure a spot in the conversation.
U.S. presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg has spent more on campaign ads in the last few weeks than his main Democratic rivals have all year. Yet his level of support has barely risen, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.
The poll, conducted Dec. 18-19, shows about 5% of Democrat-leaning voters support the billionaire former mayor of New York, up from 3% in mid-November just before he announced his candidacy.
Three candidates still lead the pack of Democrats seeking to challenge President Donald Trump in the 2020 election: former Vice President Joe Biden with 18%, Senator Bernie Sanders with 15% and Senator Elizabeth Warren with 10%.
This, despite a massive advertising budget.
He has spent over $76 million on television ads since Nov. 16, while Biden, Warren, Sanders and Buttigieg have spent a combined $13.2 million all year, according to an analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project citing Kantar/CMAG political ad data.
Bloomberg has even outspent Tom Steyer, the Democratic contest’s other billionaire candidate who has put over $72 million into TV ads this year but garnered just 2% support in the latest Reuters/Ipsos poll.
Bloomberg was not included in the final Democratic debate of 2019 either, which has presented the former NYC mayor with an enormous gap in exposure to overcome if he wishes to become a bonafide contender in the race.
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