Former New York City Mayor, billionaire, and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg made a campaign stop in Montgomery on Monday.
Bloomberg met with healthcare experts and providers to discuss his plans to lower infant mortality. Alabama has one of the highest infant mortality and maternal mortality rates in the country, especially among Black women. Bloomberg released his maternal health care plan he would work to pass through Congress if he is elected president of the United States.
Bloomberg also met with new Montgomery Mayor Steven Reed.
“I think that I can beat Donald Trump,” Bloomberg told reporters. “I don’t think Donald Trump should be president of the United States. I said that in 2016 at the Democratic National Convention. I don’t think he is the right person for the job. I think he’s done enormous damage to this country. Both domestically and in terms of our relationships around the world and I’m spending an enormous amount of money to try and replace him.”
Bloomberg also drew national headlines for his suggestion that non-police can not be trusted with possession of firearms.
Bloomberg strongly considered running for President and then in March announced that he would not run for President. After watching the Democratic debates and the other candidates struggle to articulate a coherent message he came to the conclusion that none of them can win so entered the race himself just before the deadline to qualify in Alabama.
Bloomberg told reporters that he needed every vote, including Alabama’s to win the Democratic nomination.
The Alabama Political Reporter discussed Bloomberg’s candidacy with former State Representative Perry O Hooper Jr., R-Montgomery.
Hooper predicted that Bloomberg’s message will not resonate in Alabama and that Donald J. Trump would still easily carry Alabama in November.
Hooper told APR that Bloomberg and current New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio have undone much of the work that former Mayor Rudi Giuliani had accomplished and that people are leaving the city and state as taxes and crime have increased.
“I am calling for Ivanka Trump to run for Mayor of New York City,” Hooper said. Hooper praised the style and intellect of the President’s daughter and suggested that the city would be revitalized under her leadership.
Bloomberg is currently running in fifth place in the Real Clear Politics average with 4.8 percent of the vote in national polls with 4.8 percent. Currently he is not among the top seven candidates in Iowa and New Hampshire, the first two states to hold their Democratic presidential caucuses and primaries. The candidates who do well in Iowa and New Hampshire generally build momentum going into Nevada, South Carolina, and then Super Tuesday on March 3.
Alabama is one of the Super Tuesday states along with Texas, California, Massachusetts, and others.
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has been critical of billionaire candidates Bloomberg and Tom Steyer using their vast personal wealth to buy into the process and has vowed that there will be no more billionaires if he is elected President. The Socialist Senator is proposing wealth taxes to pay for his plan for single payor healthcare and free college tuition.
Original reporting by WSFA TV Channel 12 contributed to this report.