Bloomberg, Rubio Disagree on Need for GOP Centrism

Wednesday, 06 Nov 2013 05:50 PM

By Greg Richter

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New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg says New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican, and Virginia Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, both won Tuesday because they are "centralists."

"They could work across the aisle," Bloomberg, an outgoing three-term mayor, told CNN's Jake Tapper on Wednesday. "They understood that democracy is coming together to create something that's great for most and OK for those outliers. And being an obstructionist or being a radical, the voters rejected that in both cases."

Bloomberg leaves office in 55 days, and told Tapper he has no plans to run for office after that, though he may be willing to be involved in some other way if he finds a candidate he likes.

"One thing I can guarantee you: I will vote," Bloomberg said.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., had similar words of praise for Christie's win, but didn't interpret it as a need for the Republican Party to move to the center.

"Some of these races don't apply to future races," Rubio told CNN's Dana Bash. "Every race is different, it has a different set of factors."

That difference of interpretation is easy to understand: Bloomberg is a former Republican who now identifies himself as an independent. While supporting New York City's controversial stop-and-frisk police policy, he also has led a national campaign to toughen gun control laws, and he called McAuliffe's win in Virginia a loss for the National Rifle Association.

Bloomberg says he's not running for president.

Rubio, on the other hand, is thought to be considering a run in the 2016 GOP presidential contest. So is Christie. 

CNN ran a graphic during its Wednesday coverage reading, "Christie Eyed As Republican Savior." It was just last February that Time magazine ran Rubio on its cover with the headline "The Republican Savior."

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