Michael Bloomberg’s presidential campaign has been off and running for over a week. His poll numbers, based on preferences of Democrat primary voters, have risen to 5%. While he is still behind the leaders, he has shown an advance that signals he could become a second-tier candidate soon. Among the barriers he faces is that most of his backers are people who make over $100,000 a year or are conservatives.
A new Morning Consult poll shows that Bloomberg is ahead of candidates Andrew Yang (4%) and Cory Booker (2%), each of whom has been on the campaign trail for months. Bloomberg polls at the same level as Kamala Harris, who was once considered a top-tier candidate, and near Pete Buttigieg at 9%. Buttigieg has moved to the first tier among candidates, particularly because of his strong poll showing in Iowa, the first state where Democrats will show their preferences.
Among the first-tier candidates, Joe Biden continues to be the leader at 29%, followed by Bernie Sanders at 20% and Elizabeth Warren at 15%. Support for both Biden and Sanders has slipped, according to the new Morning Consult data.
Although 90% of Democratic primary voters have heard of Bloomberg, among his challenges is that only 10% of those questioned viewed him “very favorably,” well below the first-tier candidates. And 11% view him “very unfavorably,” which is worse than the results for those in the top tier.
Bloomberg continues to have one advantage that could pull his results higher. He already has committed to tens of millions of dollars in television advertising. He easily could take this number into the hundreds of millions. While he will skip the early primaries, he has the ability to make the argument, to a vast number of American voters, that he should be their choice. However, television advertising is hardly a measure of who can take the Democratic nomination and challenge Donald Trump (if he is still the president in November).
Morning Consult polls 5,000 people daily. The most recent results are for December 2.