Hillary Clinton brushed off former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s potential exploration of a presidential run.
In an interview with Meet The Press on Sunday, the Democratic presidential candidate said that Bloomberg’s recent flirtation with an independent run in order to keep the presidency out of the hands of Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) was unnecessary.
“I’m going to do the best I can to make sure that I get the nomination and we’ll go from there,” Clinton said.
When moderator Chuck Todd asked Clinton if she was worried about a potential Bloomberg bid, the former secretary of state said that she would “relieve” him of his need to run.
“The way I read with he said is if I didn’t get the nomination, he might consider it,” Clinton said. “Well, I’m going to relieve him of that and get the nomination so he doesn’t have to.”
On Saturday, the New York Times reported that the former mayor is seriously considering a run for the presidency particularly if Clinton loses the Democratic primary and Sanders and Trump become the nominees for the Democratic and Republican parties respectively. The mayor considered running in 2008, but backed out after he reportedly believed he could not win.
Critics noted immediately that Bloomberg’s candidacy would likely be a disastrous scenario for Democrats.
The nominee needs a majority of votes from the electoral college in order to secure the nomination, otherwise the election is decided by the House of Representatives, which is overwhelmingly controlled by Republicans.
Though Bloomberg initially ran for mayor as a Republican, he later became an independent, and has championed causes embraced by the left such as gun control and immigration reform, and is liberal on issues like abortion and same-sex marriage.
A recent Morning Consult poll found that in a hypothetical contest between Trump, Bloomberg, and Clinton, the former mayor would draw more votes from Clinton than Trump.
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