Why we should take Mike Bloomberg seriously this time

The specific dream in 2008: progressive populist John Edwards versus conservative populist Mike Huckabee, two candidates rooted in — among other things — the white working-class politics that have defined the early 2016 campaign. Both, heading into Iowa, looked like they had a shot.

Most states allocate their electors on a winner-take-all model, so the path to victory requires a mere plurality. With Edwards and Huckabee speaking in the same accent to the same people, there was a path.

There were hints of a similar plan in 2012: “If Perry’s the nominee,” said NBC’s Chuck Todd that September, “I think there’s going to be be a serious effort of some sort of moderate Republican linking up with a conservative Democrat of trying to run in some sort of like, ‘Let’s throw all the bums out — let’s crash the party.”

And so here we go again. The Times piece, co-bylined by longtime Bloomberg chronicler Maggie Haberman, lays it out this way: “If Republicans were to nominate Mr. Trump or Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, a hard-line conservative, and Democrats chose Mr. Sanders, Mr. Bloomberg … has told allies he would be likely to run.”