Bloomberg announces late entry into presidential race with $31M ad buy

He has been preparing a run for weeks.

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, 77,  made his 2020 presidential run official on Sunday with a spate of television ads.

"After building a business that created thousands of jobs, [Bloomberg] took charge of a city still reeling from 9/11," the ad's narrator says. "A three-term mayor who helped bring it back from the ashes, bringing jobs and thousands of affordable housing units with it."

"[T]he wealthy will pay more in taxes and the middle class get their fair share," the ad continues. "Everyone without health insurance can get it, and everyone who likes theirs, keep it."

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg fills out paperwork, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019, at the state Capitol in Little Rock, Ark., to appear on the ballot in Arkansas' March 3 presidential primary. (Staton Breidenthal/The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Bloomberg's run came as no surprise — he had already garnered major attention for spending an eye-popping $31 million on an ad buy in TV markets across the country.

A senior Bloomberg aide told Fox News' Ed Henry that the ad was meant to announce the campaign launch. Bloomberg confirmed the run in a tweet Sunday.

Bloomberg was rumored to want to stay out of the presidential race as long as he thought former Vice President Joe Biden had a shot at winning.

Bloomberg will not accept political donations if he runs for president and he will not take a salary if he wins, according to senior aides who offered new details on Saturday about the New York billionaire's plans to navigate his wealth.


Bloomberg's 2020 rivals like Sen. Bernie Sanders and Sen. Elizabeth Warren had already unleashed their criticisms before his campaign officially launched.

"I'm disgusted by the idea that Michael Bloomberg or any billionaire thinks they can circumvent the political process and spend tens of millions of dollars to buy elections," Sanders wrote on Twitter on Friday. "If you can't build grassroots support for your candidacy, you have no business running for president."


The Associated Press contributed to this report.