Monday, June 9, 2008

Bloomberg Is Back!

In the news, that is.

I've made no secret of the fact that I'd love to see New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg enter the presidential race, if only to liven things up a bit. Why Bloomberg? Not necessarily because I'm a huge fan but because he's got the money and the name recognition to mount a serious campaign as an independent, something we haven't seen since Ross Perot ran in 1992.

After insisting that he would not run for president, Bloomberg dropped out of the presidential news for a while. But now he's back, offering to host the first of what I hope, and many others hope, will be a series of town hall meetings between Barack Obama and John McCain.

Bloomberg's offer was made in conjunction with ABC News, which both candidates wisely rejected given the awfulness of the final Democratic debate. But the mayor, minus ABC, could still pull it off.

There's lots of speculation about what Bloomberg plans to do once his second term as mayor expires next year. By law, he can't run for a third term. What I love about all the speculation is this: The pundits readily acknowledge that Bloomberg could serve as a running-mate or potential cabinet member for either Obama or McCain. Really, how many politicians could you say that about? (After the fight-to-the-finish between Obama and Hillary Clinton, just imagine McCain and Obama duking it out over who's going to get Bloomberg...)

Like him or not, Bloomberg is one of the few high-profile officeholders who has managed to transcend partisan politics, get re-elected and retain the respect of both Democrats and Republicans in the process. Now that's saying something.

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