Bloomberg's 2020 Strategy Could Involve Using Uber and Naming Star-Studded Cabinet Early | NTK Network Bloomberg’s 2020 Strategy Could Involve Using Uber and Naming Star-Studded Cabinet Early

Bloomberg’s 2020 Strategy Could Involve Using Uber and Naming Star-Studded Cabinet Early

A new book by Michael Bloomberg’s 2009 campaign manager, Bradley Tusk, could provide some insight into what a possible 2020 presidential Bloomberg campaign could look like.

By NTK Staff | 10.10.2018 @11:59am
Bloomberg’s 2020 Strategy Could Involve Using Uber and Naming Star-Studded Cabinet Early

Former New York City mayor and billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg registered as a member of the Democratic Party on Wednesday, triggering speculation that he might seek the party’s nomination for president in 2020.

A new book by Bradley Tusk, who served as Bloomberg’s 2009 campaign manager, which was released a few weeks ago could provide some insight into what a Bloomberg presidential campaign strategy might look like.

In his book, “The Fixer,” Tusk wrote that he took a leave of absence from his company, Tusk Holdings, in 2016 because Bloomberg was considering a presidential campaign as an independent candidate against Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

Tusk said he wasn’t sure that America was ready for an independent president in 2016 but that if Bloomberg were to win, his strategy would be focused on preventing Trump and Clinton from achieving the necessary 270 electoral votes to win.

“But what if we could prevent anyone from getting to 270? Then the race goes to the House of Representatives, and winning there didn’t seem totally crazy,” Tusk wrote.

With a strategy for victory, Tusk then “did what any Bloomberg-led project would do: We made a plan, did a lot of research, collected a lot of data, and put ourselves in position to launch in case Mike decide to run.”

That’s not all Tusk did, though. In February 2016, he went to San Francisco to talk with Uber founder Travis Kalanick about possibly using the mobile ridesharing app as a way to transport voters to the polls on Election Day.

“If I’m willing to pay for a ride for every American to and from the polls on Election day, would you put a Bloomberg button on the app?” Tusk asked Kalanick.

After some back and forth, which involved Tusk explaining to Kalanick that this would not mean these people would have to vote for Bloomberg and that Bloomberg’s election counsel confirmed this would be legal, Kalanick was in.

Tusk noted to Kalanick, “[I]f they’re an Uber customer and they select the Bloomberg button, there’s a pretty good chance they’re with us.”

Ubers involvement in a possible 2016 Bloomberg presidential campaign wouldn’t be limited to just providing rides to and from the polls on Election Day, however.

Kalanick and Tusk agreed that Uber would provide Bloomberg’s campaign with a list of drivers with a rating of 4.8 or higher in certain states who Tusk could tap to be Bloomberg’s grassroots team.

Tusk believed Clinton and the Democrats would use union members for their grassroots team, while Trump and the Republicans would lean on support from evangelicals.

“We weren’t going to have either. And we didn’t have an existing network of state and local party chapter to draw from,” Tusk wrote. “So we needed a supply of already-vetted independent contractors who could knock on doors, phone bank, hand out lit, and do all of the other work that comes with every campaign. Where can you find that? The sharing economy.”

But it wasn’t just Uber that Tusk intended to utilize for Bloomberg’s campaign. He talked with Ron Conway, who is a “heavily-connected venture capitalist in San Francisco.”

“[Ron Conway] didn’t see why Airbnb hosts couldn’t choose to install Bloomberg yard signs or why DoorDash delivery people couldn’t slip campaign literature under people’s doors in between food runs,” Tusk wrote.

Tusk’s outside-the-box ideas for Bloomberg’s possible 2016 campaign weren’t limited to utilizing the gig economy. He also suggested that Bloomberg name the members of his Cabinet before Election Day.

“Had we done this, Mike obviously would have decided whom to recruit, but my initial list for consideration included people like Bill Gates (Secretary of State or Education), Elon Musk (Energy), Oprah Winfrey (Commerce), Gabby Giffords (AFT), Ursula Burns (GSA), Warren Buffett (Treasury), Manny Diaz (HUD), Ray Kelly (FBI), Geoff Canada (Education), Reed Hastings (FCC), and Carl Pope (EPA),” Tusk wrote.

In the end, Bloomberg decided against running for president. Tusk explained that Bloomberg came to the conclusion that his candidacy would help Trump’s chances of winning.

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