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Millions spent on ads, Bloomberg now in 4th place

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Millions spent on ads, Bloomberg now in 4th place

Millions spent on ads, Bloomberg now in 4th place

U.S. presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg has spent more on campaign ads in the last few weeks than his main Democratic rivals have all year.

Yet his level of support has barely risen, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.

Zachary Goelman reports.

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Millions spent on ads, Bloomberg now in 4th place

Democratic presidential candidate and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has spend $73 million in just 34 days on TV campaign ads.

And what has it bought him?

Five percent.

That's his current level of support among Democrats, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.

Asked, "if the contest were held today, for whom would you vote?", eighteen percent of respondents picked former vice president Joe Biden.

Fifteen percent supported Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, and ten percent chose Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.

Then comes Bloomberg, just ahead of fifth-ranked South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, with four percent support.

Bloomberg has spent more on campaign ads in the last few weeks than his main Democratic rivals have all year.

His support has climbed, barely.

He is up from three percent support in November.

Forbes ranks the former mayor as the eight-richest American with an estimated fortune of $53 billion.

And his late entry into the race - combined with his multimillion-dollar spending spree - have made him a target for other Democrats who say he epitomizes a problem in American politics.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE AND SENATOR BERNIE SANDERS, SAYING: "We are living in a nation increasingly becoming an oligarchy, where you have a handful of billionaires who spend hundreds of millions of dollars buying elections and politicians." He entered the race the same day Senator Kamala Harris of California ended her bid for the White House.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE AND SENATOR ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING: "I miss Kamala, and it particularly hit hard that the day that Kamala announced that she had gotten out of this race because of money was the same day that a billionaire bought his way onto the stage.

Our democracy should not be a democracy of billionaires reaching into their pockets to buy elections." [FLASH] (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE AND SENATOR CORY BOOKER, SAYING: "It is a problem that we now have an overall campaign for the 2020 presidency that has more billionaires than black people." Bloomberg, a former Republican who only switched to the Democratic Party in 2018, has positioned himself as a moderate.

His wealth could be key to his risky strategy of skipping the first four Democratic primary contests - including the Feb.

3 caucus in Iowa - in hopes of making up ground on March 3 when 14 states hold primaries.




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