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Michael Bloomberg Qualifies for Las Vegas Democratic Debate

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    Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg qualified for the Democratic Presidential debate in Las Vegas, Nevada, marking the first time he will share the debate stage with other Democratic contenders. While Bloomberg didn't meet the fundraising threshold (he is not taking individual donations) he did meet the polling threshold of polling at or above 10% nationally in four separate polls.

    While I understand some candidates might be frustrated with the DNC for changing the debate qualification rules midstream and think their frustrations are warranted, I still think the DNC was left with no choice but to find some way to allow a candidate who was refusing to accept private donations from participating in the debates. On one hand it's pretty obvious that Mayor Bloomberg has basically bought his way onto the debate stage, but on the other he is now polling at or near second place in numerous primary polls and prohibiting him from participating in debates would have the appearance that the DNC is actively working to tip the scales against him. I don't envy the DNC, but I think they made the right decision.

    When it comes to what Bloomberg's presence on the debate stage means, only time will tell. He is a skilled politician who ran the biggest city in the country for over a decade. However, he has only been a Democrat since 2018 and I have a feeling that will be brought up over and over by the other debate participants throughout the debate.

    What I'm also interested in seeing is how he will fare during a live debate compared to the structured commercials he has flooded the airwaves with. Most Americans only know him from his commercials and have never seen him in any other setting, so he has a lot to gain (and lose) from being on the debate stage in Vegas.

    It should certainly be an interesting night.

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    I have a feeling the gloves are going to come off against Bloomberg at the debate. Senator Warren made clear she is chomping at the bit to engage with him on the stage and I'm sure others will jump in, as well.

    Bernie and Warren will likely go after him from the left while the more moderate candidates will probably be less harsh but still question his bona fides as a true Democrat considering he has been a registered Republican for the majority of his political career.

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    I agree, Bloomberg should be allowed in the debate. He is polling well and really that's the most important metric. If you have enough money to fund your own campaign you shouldn't be required to meet a donation threshold. I understand its a good marker of support. But a better marker is polling. Or at least they are equal to me.

    Also agree that all the other candidates will be gunning for Bloomberg. I expect more than half the night will be each candidate taking turns taking shots at him. He is a legitimate threat to everyone's polling numbers. I'm not particularly happy about it, but Bloomberg might be solidly in 2nd place now and a few good debates and a few big wins on Super Tuesday could turn the tides massively for him. This has been a pretty crazy rollercoaster ride to watch with the Dems this election season. No real clear frontrunner. Just 2-5 that could win and seems the lead person keeps changing.

    Watch for Bernie v Bloomberg tonight. That will be most telling. And also how Biden reacts. We know Warren is going to attack him. I assume Pete will. Of course Amy will.