Bloomberg Adopts the Steyer Strategy

Michael Bloomberg, who may or may not be running, will definitely be spending. The question is why.

Ahead of a potential campaign announcement, Mr. Bloomberg, the billionaire businessman and former mayor of New York City, is beginning a $100 million digital campaign designed to attack and define President Trump in the top battleground states seen as likely to decide the 2020 election. The ads will go online on Friday in four states — Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — and run through the end of the primary season, even if Mr. Bloomberg is not in the race.

In a twist, Mr. Bloomberg himself will not be featured in the ads beyond legally required disclaimers, even as he actively lays the groundwork for a campaign, his advisers said.

That would be a really devastating move if the election were to take place at the end of primary season.

So this isn't about President Trump. It's about Bloomberg. 

Why run anti-Trump ads through primary season? Bloomberg might just be adopting Tom Steyer's strategy. Steyer bought his way into the Democrat field by running an impeachment campaign push, which then made for a very useful resource once Steyer announced that he was running.

Why run digital ads, as opposed to print ads?

The obvious answer is that digital ads can be used to get the information of the people viewing and clicking on them. And that may be what Bloomberg is really after. It's not an original strategy. But nothing about Bloomberg is.