Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Bloomberg/Schwarzenegger 08'

The political world is a buzz with speculation about a potential independent run by New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg who yesterday changed his political affiliation from Republican to unafilliated (read: independent). A potential Bloomberg run is intriguing because he is a very very rich man ($5.5 billion according to Forbes), who is willing to self finance his candidacy (spedn $150million to get reelected, though he didn't have a serious challenger); it has been speculated that he'd be willing to spend upto $1billion to run for the presidency as an independent. With his move to "unaffiliated" and his: "Any successful elected executive knows that real results are more important than partisan battles and that good ideas should take precedence over rigid adherence to any particular political ideology. Working together, there's no limit to what we can do." mantra, may proof that he is slowly warming up for a run.

During Fox & Friends coverage of the Bloomberg story today, a very interesting angle was introduced, with Bloomberg "hobnobbing" with California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, could this be a potential independent ticket in 08'. A Bloomberg/Schwarzenegger ticket would be electric. These are two independent minded leaders, from the two most populous states, who have shown a penchant for bi-partisanship and are monied to the point that they do not accept salaries. They also have high name id, and would find instant buzz around the country, enough buzz to overcome the hurdles that Ross Perot and his no name vp candidate. With the electorate seemingly hungry for a radical change in D.C. and an easing of the partisan gridlock that has dominated American politics, a Bloomberg/Schwarzenegger, could prove to be a potent alternative to the democrats and republicans.

But their exists a major roadblock to this ticket, no matter how appealing it may be, it could never be, at least not without a constitutional amendment. Schwarzenegger is barred from runnning for president by Article II section one of the constitution: No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President" He is further barred from holding the office of Vice President by the 12th Amendment: "But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States."

The constitution would also barr any Clinton/Bill Clinton or any x/Bill Clinton candidacies in the future. Again, unless the constitution is amended.


Anonymous Nekessa said...

I don't know about Schwarzenegger as his running mate-- even with an amendment would be political suicide. I am actually shocked that California elected him again!

Now, I think many Democrats are already happy with their candidates. The votes that might spill over to Bloomberg are probably the Republicans one. Let's see, once he begins campaigning, what he has to offer. You are right that Bloomberg will bring a lot to the table, and like Ralph Nader before him bring issues to the table that both parties tend to ignore.

9:08 AM  
Anonymous nekessa said...

hadn't really thought about this, but saw on the Huff someone saying that Bloomberg won't announce till early 2008, whatsmore, he will be fresh and will not have to spend as much as these other candidates--ending up with a larger networth. :) Well, this works perfectly for him. However, Obama needed to have started when he did since he lacked name recognition. As for Hillary with all the hate coming her way, she also needs to work a lot on maintaining her base.

2:44 PM  
Anonymous Dave N. said...

The media would love to see a Bloomberg/Schwarzenegger and are the ones generating most of the hype. This would indeed make the 2008 elections even more interesting, which is almost hard to believe.

The Schwarzenegger ammendment is a moot point because it's not something that congress will pass, although he is incredibly popular within the GOP.

I believe Bloomberg will run - he has a buffet of running mates to pick from (GOP and Dem primary losers etc) but like Nekessa said, this spells more trouble for the Republicans that the Democrats.

5:34 PM  
Blogger Githush said...

@Nekessa and Dave. Thanks for your comments.

- I agree with both that an amendment to allow Arnold to run would be impossible to pass. It takes too long for amendments to go through and with the current hysteria over immigration, such a move would find it difficult to pass, especially in the Red States.

- Bloomberg is indeed likely going to wait until next year to announce (probably after Tsunami Tuesday) until the parties decide who they'll pick and he's likely to bring up issues that both parties would ignore. He's also (as Deve mentioned) likely to have his share of potential VP candidates - one mentioned again and again is Chuck Hagel the vietnam vet, senator from Nebraska.

- He's unlikely to get elected, and would find it difficult to even get to Ross Perot's 19% or - even more important - get any electoral votes. Though he could make New York competitive and complicate Dems electoral math, especially in a state they have to win.

- His impact on the parties is likely to - as yall have mentioned - be felt more by republicans, as he would pull away moderates from the Republican party. However, as mentioned above, he could make some predominantly Dem states (NY and CA) competitive and pull away some electoral votes. And NY and CA are a must for Dems.

- His impact would also be felt in the primaries. I think a Bloomberg run (or potential run) helps Giuliani tremendously. Like the Dems in 04', the powers that be in the Republican party may decide to eschew ideology in favor of "electability". And by Rudy emphasising his general election chances, he could convince enough voters that getting a Republican in the White House is more important than getting the RIGHT republican.

3:42 AM  

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