Even though it had been rumored for a long time, it was still a little breathtaking to read that Mayor Bloomberg intends to run for office again in 2009. The 66-year-old billionaire had, after all, previously come out against a change in term limits. His brilliant staff was not only largely against the idea, but they are also exhausted after eight years of nonstop racing against the clock. And most voters, even though they love Bloomberg, are against a change in term limits. Yet here we are! Most of Bloomberg’s potential opponents, like Comptroller Bill Thompson and Councilman Tony Avella, have already decried the decision, and Representative Anthony Weiner says he’ll still run. But what does everyone else think?
• The Times editorial board has always been against term limits, but until now opposed abolishing them through City Council. They instead preferred putting the issue to a citywide vote. But they’ve “concluded now that changing the law legislatively does not make us nearly as uncomfortable as keeping it.” [NYT]
• Rudy Giuliani, who sought to extend his own tenure as mayor without a vote after 9/11, says he’d campaign for Bloomberg. “He does the job very well and it’s hard off the cuff to think of somebody who would do it better,” he said. “That’s about the best reason you can have.” [NYDN]
• Ed Koch, the last mayor of New York (one of only three) to serve three terms, put it more simply: “Hooray! Hooray!” [Newsday]
• Columnist Juan Gonzalez, whose paper strongly supports a third Bloomberg term, grumbles: “The New York City oligarchy has spoken — and the peoples’ will be damned … This goes beyond blind ambition.” [NYDN]
• Even though there’s a legal difference, Ben Smith thinks that this smells much too similar to Giuliani’s unpopular effort to extend his term after 9/11. “The core argument is the same,” he writes. “In this unprecedented moment of crisis, we can’t do without this ‘effective and popular’ individual.” [Room 8]
• Tom Robbins gets a laugh out of the endorsements Bloomberg racked up before the announcements, many from fellow billionaires who have made a lot of money under his regime. [VV]
• Air America’s Mark Green (a former political rival of Bloomberg’s) calls the move “an antidemocratic, self-dealing power grab.” [AP]