Few Texans Shedding Tears at Bloomberg's Decision Not to Run For President

The decision by businessman and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg not to enter the 2016 presidential race is unlikely to have much impact on Texans.  As we were preparing the February 2016 University of Texas / Texas Tribune Poll, Bloomberg had recently made headlines by announcing that the shape of the contests in both parties had him again considering a presidential run as an independent. Given the interest in a possible independent candidacy (especially at time when Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump were both in ascendant phases), we added a couple of items on Bloomberg to the poll.  They didn't suggest he would be particularly competitive in Texas.  Neither Democrats nor Republicans had strong positive views of him, and many voters had no opinion, suggesting little familiarity.  Nor was Bloomberg especially well-regarded among conservatives of any stripe.  Among those who identify as extremely conservative, 52 percent thought he would make a terrible president.  By comparison, only 20 percent of extremely conservative Texans expressed the same judgment about  Donald Trump -- even though both are from New York.  Speaking of that classification system, only 8 percent of the extremely conservative thought Ted Cruz would make a terrible president.

Interestingly enough, the New York Times, in reporting Bloomberg's decision, also reports that Bloomberg "set up campaign offices in two states — Texas and North Carolina — where the process of gathering petitions to put Mr. Bloomberg’s name on the ballot would have begun in days."  The Times also reports that Bloomberg had paid for polling in 22 states.  Texas was probably one of those, and the news couldn't have been good.

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Great president3%3%1%
Good president11%6%4%
Average president33%25%17%
Poor president18%12%17%
Terrible president13%31%40%
Don't know22%22%21%

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categoryLeaning conservativeSomewhat conservativeExtremely conservative
Great president2%2%1%
Good president12%3%1%
Average president28%17%13%
Poor president10%23%18%
Terrible president25%40%52%
Don't know23%15%14%

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Very favorable5%1%1%
Somewhat favorable14%11%4%
Neither favorable nor unfavorable36%25%17%
Somewhat unfavorable13%11%16%
Very unfavorable9%33%42%
Don't know/no opinion24%18%19%

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categoryLeaning conservativeSomewhat conservativeExtremely conservative
Very favorable4%3%2%
Somewhat favorable8%4%3%
Neither favorable nor unfavorable29%15%12%
Somewhat unfavorable15%17%13%
Very unfavorable25%47%54%
Don't know/no opinion19%14%15%