Rich Entrepreneur Outsider Michael Bloomberg Jack Hidary Enters Mayor’s Race

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Photo: Jackfornyc.com

Last month, the New York Times dubbed tech mogul Jack D. Hidary "a kind of Bloomberg 2.0: socially progressive, fiscally reserved, and digitally savvy." And now that he's ready to announce his candidacy as an independent, the comparisons continue. Hidary, who founded the tech career site Dice.com and now runs Samba Energy "is offering himself up as a Bloomberg for the post-Bloomberg era, with a dose of personal charisma and charm the current mayor lacked when he entered politics in 2001," the Times' Michael Barbaro and Michael Grynbaum wrote on Tuesday. He's made a pet issue out of encouraging taxis to go hybrid, and according to Gotham Schools he's interested in "business development, education reform, and the technology sector." He's also rounding up quite the campaign team on his own dime, another Bloomberg parallel.

Hidary is setting himself up as an alternative to a crowded field, assembling heavy hitters to get his message across: Howard Dean campaign manager Joe Trippi, Bloomberg finance lawyer Kenneth A. Gross, Clinton media strategist Richard Strauss, and Chris Christie adviser CampaignGrid have all signed on. Since he's running as an independent, Hidary figures he has until the primaries in September before people really start following the race in earnest. So until then the plan is to raise funds and support, build his team, and (presumably) keep encouraging the "Bloomberg 2.0" image in the press.

Check out the campaign video: