Billionaire and Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg visited Ohio for the second time in a month on Wednesday night, picking up an endorsement from Akron's mayor.
“We’re not looking for a savior; we’re looking for a partner in the Oval Office," said Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan.
During his speech to a large crowd at Akron’s Bounce Innovation Hub, Bloomberg – the former mayor of New York City – touched briefly on many topics, including his efforts to reduce infant mortality and gun violence. Both he and Horrigan say those are important issues in cities like Akron.
“I’m a big believer that we’ve gotta get guns out of the hands of criminals and people with psychiatric problems," Bloomberg said. "And there’s no reason to have AK-47s in people’s hands. Just a thought!”
Bloomberg also spent part of his low-key, 20-minute speech lauding Horrigan’s economic development efforts in Akron. In 2017, Horrigan was chosen for the inaugural class of a Bloomberg-led initiative to help mayors gain executive leadership skills.
Bloomberg served as NYC mayor first as a Republican and later an Independent. In remarks to reporters, he briefly spoke about the man he could face if he win the Democratic nomination: President Donald Trump. Bloomberg said that, in light of this week’s events in Iran, Trump lacks experience in foreign affairs.
“He got rid of all the people in the State Department that could give him advice. And the Department of Defense," Bloomberg said. " We need people who do business around the world. Donald Trump has never done that. In my company, we deal in 70 different countries. He’s dealt, as far as I know, in one. And he just makes decisions without consulting others. And that’s the ways you make a bad decision.”
Bloomberg will be opening an Akron campaign office by the end of the month, likely on West Market Street.