Maybe Americans Don't Want Mike Bloomberg to Save Them

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Nov. 29 2010 2:31 PM

Maybe Americans Don't Want Mike Bloomberg to Save Them

The ever-useful Public Policy Polling asks Americans whether they're hankering for a Mike Bloomberg independent bid in 2012. Nope!

Only 19% of Americans expressed a favorable opinion of Bloomberg on our most recent national poll while 38% said they see him unfavorably. That -19 favorability spread makes him more unpopular than Barack Obama, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, and even Sarah Palin and places him slightly ahead of only Newt Gingrich. Republicans are the most negative toward him, giving him a 12/48 favorability. Independents weigh in at 19/37, and only Democrats even come close to rating him positively with 24% saying they have a favorable opinion of him to 30% with a negative one.

Tested in a hypothetical three way contest with Barack Obama and Mitt Romney Bloomberg registers at only 11% with Obama getting 44% and Romney 38%.

Advertisement

This is a classic Pauline Kael "nobody I know voted for Nixon" poll, isn't it? How can Bloomberg have only a 19 percent favorable rating? His favorable rating in the press is roughly 99 percent, give or take 1 percent. But insofar as Bloomberg has a national image, it's for 1) supporting the "ground zero mosque," 2) campaigning for gun bans, and possibly 3) being a rich guy who wants to be president. Insofar as Americans want a third party candidate, they want one who will tackle issues that both parties are, in Washington, to their left on -- immigration, spending cuts. And Bloomberg is to the left of Congress on those issues. So why support him?

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at daveweigel@gmail.com, or tweet at him @daveweigel.