Mike Bloomberg, the three-term mayor of New York City and financial data and media billionaire, will not be a candidate for president in the 2016 election.
Bloomberg, who has been the subject of repeated speculation about a run as a third-party candidate who might derail the campaign of Republican front-runner Donald Trump, announced his decision not to seek America’s highest elective office in an editorial on the Bloomberg View website.
“I’ve always been drawn to impossible challenges, and none today is greater or more important than ending the partisan war in Washington and making government work for the American people — not lobbyists and campaign donors,” Bloomberg wrote. “But when I look at the data, it’s clear to me that if I entered the race, I could not win.”
Bloomberg had briefly fired up the hopes and dreams of the tech cognoscenti, who hoped his data-driven technocratic approach would resonate with enough voters nationally to at minimum avert a Trump presidency.
True to his core, for Bloomberg it all came down to simple numbers — specifically, the number of electoral votes needed to win the election outright: “I believe I could win a number of diverse states — but not enough to win the 270 Electoral College votes necessary to win the presidency.”
Instead, he said, he might win enough electoral votes to deny an electoral majority to anyone, and thus throw the race to the U.S. House of Representatives, which under the Constitution decides the election when there’s no clear electoral majority. The prospect of an election not decided by the people, he argued, was too risky: “Party loyalists in Congress — not the American people or the Electoral College — would determine the next president.”
This article originally appeared on Recode.net.