Michael Bloomberg weighs presidential bid

Sources reveal ex-NYC Mayor willing to spend up to $1 billion in independent campaign, with a decision due by March.

Ari Yashar ,

Michael Bloomberg in Jerusalem
Michael Bloomberg in Jerusalem
Flash 90

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is seriously considering a presidential bid on an independent ballot, according to sources close to the Jewish billionaire.

Bloomberg is willing to spend $1 billion of his personal funds in the campaign, according to a report by the New York Times on Saturday morning.

Two sources close to Bloomberg later confirmed to CNN that he is indeed eyeing a bid on the White House, and will need to make a final decision by March in order to run in the November election.

The 73-year-old has long been a staunch supporter of Israel, although no Independent has ever become president of the United States. He formerly was a Democrat before switching to being a Republican and then going Independent, and he previously raised speculation in 2008 and 2012 over potential campaigns.

However, he may see a backlash from conservatives over his strong backing of stiffening gun laws, and from liberals over his close ties to Wall Street.

Bloomberg reportedly is considering the presidential run in light of the way fellow New York billionaire Donald Trump has been leading the Republican primaries, and the massive problems facing Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton.

Both Trump and Clinton face stiff competition from Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) respectively.