November 30th, 2007
01:01 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama, Bloomberg hold mystery meeting

Obama and Bloomberg had a surprise breakfast Monday in New York City.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - New York may be Sen. Hillary Clinton’s home turf – but the man in charge, Mayor Mike Bloomberg, met this morning with Barack Obama, one of her chief rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination.

The pair sat down for coffee and eggs in midtown Manhattan, just a quick cab ride away from former President Bill Clinton’s offices in Harlem. The mayor might be a billionaire, but Obama still paid, and left a big tip – almost 60 percent.

While Bloomberg has always spoken well of Clinton, he feels no special hometown loyalty to the senator, who failed to endorse him during his two mayoral runs, when he ran as a Republican.

Bloomberg reached out to the Obama campaign, according to campaign spokesman Bill Burton, who told CNN's Mary Snow the pair discussed issues from the economy and education to homeland security and global warming – but wouldn’t say whether the two talked about a possible presidential endorsement.

“They have a shared belief there is too much game playing in Washington and not enough problem solving,” said Burton, who added that there are no future meetings on the books.

Bloomberg, who is no longer registered to any political party, has long pledged to steer clear of national politics and the presidential campaign, but his morning meeting with the Illinois senator (which only appeared late last night on Bloomberg’s schedule, and caught many Obama-watchers by surprise), comes on the heels of a similar meal with Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Nebraska, just a few days ago.

Obama and Bloomberg first met earlier this year, when the mayor came to Washington to press for more Homeland Security funding for the Big Apple.

- CNN Associate Editor Rebeca Sinderbrand

soundoff (108 Responses)
  1. truth

    "On a final note, Iowa caucus will be won by either Edwards or Sen Clinton. Mark this day and let's wait till the morning hours of 4th January."

    Not so fast, Meks, Let's wait and see. Up til now, all Obama's proposals have been down by experts and professionals in the fields. Hillary and Edward proposals are pretty much in life, warmly accepted. The problem is Obama can propose, but Obama can not go in details and deep. Experts say Hillary and Edward can and basically tell you 1,2,3 to back their plans. That is a huge difference. Bottom line, Obama is not ready to lead.

    November 30, 2007 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  2. Jim, Columbus, OH

    Too much game playing in Washington...nobody plays more games than Bloomberg and Obama. None of this is surprising...Which party are you going to run from now, Mike? And Barack, what else are you going to say to please the crowd?

    November 30, 2007 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  3. jd, des moines, iowa

    Obama is looking for a job from Bloomberg after he loses his nomination.

    November 30, 2007 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  4. Richard Irvine CA

    That Obama Hagel ticket sounds good t me!

    November 30, 2007 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  5. Carlos Morales

    At least Bloomberg doesn't have any "special" self interests if he were to run for president in the future. I'm sure he had some good advice for Obama. I would vote for the Bloomberg-Obama party right now!

    November 30, 2007 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  6. trent porter, tx

    Obama would probably get my vote if he wasn't anti-guns. sad. btw this really isn't news. Ron Paul 08!

    November 30, 2007 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  7. Dan, TX

    Here's how Obama can win the nomination and the general election.

    People learn about him and his policies. Detailed information about everything he has written and said on his positions is readily available at his campaign site.

    Once you learn, then decide.
    Most people realize that he's the real deal. I did, he's got my vote.

    If you vote for him, he will win.

    November 30, 2007 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  8. Markie Bee, Sacramento, Calif.

    I guess when you have nothing much else going for you, a breakfast with Bloomberg will make the news. People may not like the Clintons or just Democrats in general, but she is still much more qualified than Obama.

    Please, please, please answer me this because not ONE single Hillary supporter has responded to my challenge, which is this: Please list how Hillary Clinton is more experienced than Barack Obama. Give me a list of accomplishments in the senate that she AUTHORED. Show me her list of earmarks for New Yorkers (trick question, she hasn't released that list). Bacially it's time to put up or shut up on Hillary's experience. Other than John Edwards, she is the least experienced Democrat in the race. But I'll be waiting for your response anyway.

    November 30, 2007 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  9. Anthony Best, London

    God Bless Obama & Bloomberg..The lord is smiling on America which needs them, cause since JFK, those two would make the first whitehouse that is clean of the evil secret soceities.

    November 30, 2007 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  10. tina, NY, NY

    Typical post from Obama supporter. Please people learn about every candidate not JUST OBAMA. There are other choices available.
    Here's how Obama can win the nomination and the general election.

    People learn about him and his policies. Detailed information about everything he has written and said on his positions is readily available at his campaign site.

    Once you learn, then decide.
    Most people realize that he's the real deal. I did, he's got my vote.

    If you vote for him, he will win.

    Posted By Dan, TX : November 30, 2007 3:18 pm

    November 30, 2007 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |


    November 30, 2007 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  12. Erika Columbus, Ohio

    "A nation healed..A world repaired" that's the thought process of a candidate that I am looking for as a voter.
    This is a little off topic, but has anyone noticed CNN not giving Obama no respect online? Everything is NEGATIVE or because he has moved up in the polls the +/- 4% has been highlighted everywhere. I don't recall when Hillary was leading this being an issue. If I could give some advice mindful with the fairness of your reporting, you could miss out at the wrong time.

    November 30, 2007 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  13. Trang, Fremont, CA

    It's not Obama who initiate this meeting. It's Bloomber who initiate this meeting. Obama has the ability to draw people to him – because he is likable, decent, easy to work with. That's the first step toward diplomacy.

    He listens to you and he talks to you. He has the personal touch, as Bill Clinton. Unfortunately, Hillary does not have this. Hillary would be a good administrator, but not a leader. Of course, I do feel a bit sad for her, given that most of her life has been devoted to politics, but here comes a young person comes and snatch the light out from her, but he has that ability – the ability to inspire the whole country, and maybe the whole world.

    People often turn mean toward another because they no longer trust one another. People have turned cynical because they have been betrayed many times. Nobody cares for anybody, it seems.

    But Obama believes in the goodness of people, in the core decency of people, and this is what he pulls out from people. We all have two sides, our 'good' side and our 'bad' side, and if he can pull our 'good' side out, he can turn this country around.

    The moment is now. It's time we grab on to this opportunity and turn this country around.

    November 30, 2007 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  14. AJ, IL

    Hey fellow bloggers...Bloomberg initiated the meeting with Obama. I think Bloomberg being the big businessman/politician that he is re-testing Obama (i.e. kicking the tires and checking the shocks). I feel an endorsement forthcoming from Hillary's backyard, and it's not for Hillary!

    GO OBAMA! Obama in '08!

    November 30, 2007 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  15. Michael Guinn - Ventura CA

    I HAVE to comment on the person who says Senator Obama is the candidate being backed by "Billionaire Democrats" who want to smear the Clinton name and destroy all the good things that were done during Bill's Presidency-I worked on two Bill Clinton campaigns and proudly voted for him twice- I am an Obama supporter because I think he's the best candidate.
    We have raised millions from grassroots people-NOT BILLIONAIRES and LOBBYISTS-
    I respect you being for Hillary- but disrespect the lies and deceit that comes from her supporters.
    The time for CHANGE is now-Thanks Bill Clinton for all you've done for our great Country, good ridence to the fool from Crawford who has done so much damage to it!
    Got Hope? You BET!
    OBAMA 08!

    November 30, 2007 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  16. Coach Haughton NH

    I want to ask some of you to think for a minute.

    Lets take the words MOST QUALIFIED CANDIDATE into consideration...As I understand the qualifications for being president are to be a natural born citizen who is 35 years of age and never convicted of a felony. Therefore everyone running for president is just as "qualified".

    Lets take a look at the words "most experienced candidate". In 11 years as a legislator Barack Obama passed landmark ethics reform on both the state and federal level. BTW Barack AUTHORED those bills. Oh yea barack opposed the war from the start.

    In eight years as first lady Hillary clinton met with a lot of people, became a campainging legend and failed at getting healthcare.

    In her seven years as a senator she voted with bush on the war and is still voting with bush...

    I don't want a candidate who is READY to push their outdated, corrupt agenda from DAY ONE.

    I want change we can believe in, and the moral stength and judgement to do the right thing.

    Any logical retorts?

    November 30, 2007 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  17. Asher Heimermann, Sheboygan, Wisconsin

    Maybe Obama will ask Bloomberg to be his Vice President. Now, that would be something I can agree on!

    Asher Heimermann, WI

    November 30, 2007 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  18. Julie, Columbia, MO

    Odd what minutiae people sometimes pick up on. Obama left too big a tip (careless with money). Obama's tip was inconsequential (not nearly enough). Obama paid for the meal (how dare he squander is $$). Obama paid for the meal (well, since it was only a nickel-&-dime meal that doesn't say a thing about him). Obama sat next to a window. Obama sat next to the aisle. Obama ordered eggs. Obama sat in a green chair. A purple booth. Ordered Fried Ice Cream and meatloaf. God save us all from people who consider these to be Real points of contention, much less base their vote on them. Re. the "secrecy" adjective applied to the meeting, I assumed it was rather clear that it was the content of the meeting, not the location, date, time, or fact of the meeting, which was speculative. Really - take a cue from Obama and don't sweat the small stuff.


    December 1, 2007 03:39 am at 3:39 am |
  19. UMI

    But Obama will know whether to resolve the problems 🙁

    December 1, 2007 03:42 am at 3:42 am |
  20. Kyu Reisch, Radcliff, Kentucky

    Megha, San Antonio, I agree with you. Obama lied like three rugs, he is worse liar than anyone else in the campaign. His supporters lost their mind, I hope Americans pay more attention to Obama's twist and lie.

    December 1, 2007 03:58 am at 3:58 am |
  21. Ben Marble, M.D.

    If the dummicraps are dum enough to nominate Hitllary they will be guaranteeing a repuke victory in 08

    December 1, 2007 06:33 am at 6:33 am |
  22. juan carlos tello

    Here goes the truth,sure Bloomberg and the republicans will be using their money to give to Barack Obama in order to change the course of Mrs Hillary Clinton lead in the way to the Presidency,Mr Barack Obama will not be nominated for the Democrats Afro-Americans will not support him,not even the latino voters,I believe that Hillary Clinton & Jhon Edwards will be our next American Leaders.

    December 1, 2007 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  23. L. Deshawn Iowa

    During the hostage crisis, Hillary immediately stopped what she was doing, cancelled an important speech at the DNC, showed her care, compassion and warmth for ALL candidates’ workers, WHAT A TRUE PROFESSIONAL CLASSY FIRST LADY AND PRESIDENT IN 2008…
    For all you mothers out there, Please vote for Hillary, we have let these old men ruin out great country, let a Woman show them how it can be done without a war or back yard politics like obama is playing…

    If you let a celebrity like oprah, influence your decision, SHAME on you! You will be selling out your country and your children’s health care and future. If you recently read the article that employees of HARPO prod, said she is power hungry! She would spent every penny to buy a black president and get her foot in the white house, I MOST DEFINITLY WOULD NOT want oprah making any decisions for this country, she wants in the white house anyway she can, we have seem that before. How do you think bush was elected a second time! We the American people! DO NOT have the time to teach obama/oprah how to be a politician, this great country in is need of someone who can hit the floor running in 2008, because the American people do not know all the damage BUSH/CHANEY has really done because they are liars and dishonest and should be IMPEACHED. ALL of the republicans stood back, took the money and let these two stooges almost destroy our great country, is why republicans will loose most likely every election this time around.
    Clintons have already very successfully cleaned up a bush mess. WE HAVE SEEN THEY CAN DO IT!
    Clinton is the Smart and only choice in 2008. Id like to see John Edwards as her VP or Bill Richardson. Obama is the only self proclaimed democrat running like a republican. Send this guy back to school, Oprahs school…

    December 1, 2007 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  24. Joe Montanna NH




    December 1, 2007 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  25. sarah, El Paso TX

    I do hope and pray that Obama wins the nomination but even if he does not he should consider running as an independent Obama-Bloomberg ticket. It is clear that no one will vote for Rudy and Clinton will be too polarizing (nothing would get done) and bickering back and forth with Rudy would guarantee a win. With an Obama-Bloomberg ticket you get eloquence and fiscal competence –can’t go wrong with that.

    December 1, 2007 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
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