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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 26 March 2019

Former New York mayor Bloomberg rules out 2020 US presidential run

Billionaire entrepreneur will focus on grassroots campaigns to tackle issues such as climate change and gun control

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg speaks during the Bloomberg New Economy Forum in Singapore on November 6, 2018. AFP
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg speaks during the Bloomberg New Economy Forum in Singapore on November 6, 2018. AFP

Michael Bloomberg, the billionaire entrepreneur and former mayor of New York, has announced that he will not run for US president in the 2020 election.

"Many people have urged me to run," he said in an article on the Bloomberg news website.

"Some have told me that to win the Democratic nomination, I would need to change my views to match the polls. But I’ve been hearing that my whole political career.”

The Bloomberg chief executive has successfully run for office three times but said he might not win the hotly contested Democratic Party nomination for 2020.

He has chosen to “double down” on the work that he is already leading and funding to help the US.

“I’ve come to realise that I’m less interested in talking than doing," Mr Bloomberg said.

"And I have concluded that, for now, the best way for me to help our country is by rolling up my sleeves and continuing to get work done."

He said he was launching a grassroots campaign called Beyond Carbon, to move America as quickly as possible away from fossil fuels and towards 100 per cent clean energy.

Mr Bloomberg also spoke of reducing the racial achievement gap in public schools and increasing access to college for low-income pupils.

Gun violence was another area on which he touched. He said that Congress had not passed a major gun safety bill in almost 25 years.

Despite this, due to his campaigning, 20 states have passed stronger background check bills or adopted more gun safety laws.

Mr Bloomberg has been stoking speculation for a while that he may run for presidency. He served as the 108th mayor of New York City between January 2002 and December 2013.

Fourteen Democratic candidates have entered the 2020 presidential race. Nominees include Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren, Vermont senator Bernie Sanders and Hawaii congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard.

Joe Biden, former vice president under Barack Obama, is also heavily rumoured to run.

Updated: March 6, 2019 03:36 AM

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