Publisher's note: The author of this post is Mitch Kokai for the John Locke Foundation.
Editors at Issues and Insights want no one to buy into the narrative
that former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg
would offer a centrist choice to Democratic presidential primary voters.
- Michael Bloomberg has been blanketing the airwaves with ads that tout his up-by-his-bootstraps success, his can-do attitude, his supposed ability to unite the country. "Mike can get it done," the ads declare, without indicating what
- Bloomberg's spending spree has not only been translating into a rise in the polls, it's cementing his claim to be a centrist, at least among pundits. Even on the right, that's how he's being described.
- The New York Post's Michael Goodwin called him "the great centrist hope for Democrats to defeat Trump."
- The Wall Street Journal's Peggy Noonan opined recently that "Biden's collapse created a vacuum in the center, and the former mayor has the money and will to fill it."
- Has anyone calling Bloomberg a centrist bothered to look at his campaign website, rather than just listen to his campaign ads?
- On issue after issue, Bloomberg is as radical, or slightly less so, than socialist Bernie Sanders. In fact, on taxes, health care, the environment, gun control, there is little light between the two.
- Here's a rundown.
- Taxing the "rich": Bloomberg wants to raise the top rate back to 39.6%, impose a 5% surtax on incomes above $5 million, and tax capital gains as ordinary income for those making more than $1 million. He'd also sharply raise taxes on inherited wealth, and hike corporate taxes. All of which is nearly identical to what Sanders proposes.
- Environmental extremism: Bloomberg is as radical as Sanders when it comes to fighting "climate change." He promises to cut carbon dioxide emissions in half in a decade, and - ditto Sanders - completely decarbonize the nation by 2050. It's a goal that, if attempted, would destroy the economy.