How Much Would a Bloomberg Endorsement Even Help Romney?

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Bloomberg really does not like guns.
Bloomberg really does not like guns. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images

The Romney campaign is hoping that early backer John McCain can convince his good friend Michael Bloomberg to cough up an endorsement for the presumed Republican presidential nominee. Yesterday, McCain stopped by City Hall to lay on some of that trademark McCain charm:

“I just came in to pay my respects to the mayor. He and I are old friends from many years back,” McCain told The Post as he left City Hall. “I told him that I just spent last weekend with Romney and I thought that Romney was on message ... and tried to convince the mayor that we’ve got a winning campaign.”

While Bloomberg hasn't been a big fan of President Obama, and you could see how he'd appreciate Romney's business background and technocratic instincts, it's not totally clear that his endorsement would actually be much of a benefit to the Romney campaign. Bloomberg has been one of the nation's foremost proponents of gun control, an avid pursuer of nanny-state health initiatives, and an outspoken defender of gay marriage and the so-called Ground Zero Mosque. A December 2011 ABC News/Washington Post poll of 1,019 adults nationwide found Bloomberg with a weak -2 favorability rating among "conservatives," and an even worse -14 favorability rating among "very conservatives." Having Bloomberg at his side is maybe not the best look for someone trying to convince the GOP base that he's truly a "severe conservative" and not a Massachusetts "progressive."

However, Bloomberg also had a +12 spread among moderates, and those are the voters that Romney would likely hope to impress with the Bloomberg seal of approval. Additionally, Bloomberg, you may recall, is a very wealthy person. We don't really see him throwing millions away on a super-PAC donation when it could be going to, you know, saving peoples' lives in Bangladesh, but if he were so inclined, Bloomberg could part with Adelson-type money without ever noticing it was missing.