Following the call Mr Vilsack said: “He is in.” He said Mr Bloomberg told him “it was true he is running.”
Mr Bloomberg’s advisers indicated his main motivation was that he believes Mr Trump, his fellow New York businessman, represented an “existential threat” to the United States.
He has previously called Mr Trump a “con” and a “dangerous demagogue.”
Howard Wolfson, an adviser to Mr Bloomberg, told the Washington Post: “He woke up and said ‘Oh my God, Donald Trump is going to be re-elected – I better run for president.'”
It is believed a trigger for Mr Bloomberg’s late move was recent polling showing Mr Trump highly competitive in key swing states against all the current Democrat candidates, including Mr Biden.
Those results came despite Mr Trump being in the midst of an impeachment crisis.
The president also has a vastly bigger campaign war chest than all the current Democrat hopefuls. But Mr Bloomberg, America’s eighth richest man with a fortune of over $50 billion, would be able to outspend him.
Anthony Scaramucci, Mr Trump’s former White House communications director, said there was “no question he [Mr Bloomberg] would be the number one threat” to Mr Trump.
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