U.S. News

Bloomberg spent over $100 million for reelection: report

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg speaks to supporters after his election win in New York, November 3, 2009. REUTERS/Shaun Best

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s narrower-than-expected reelection campaign cost the billionaire some $102 million, or about $183 per vote, The New York Times reported on Friday evening, making him the top-spending self-financed politician in U.S. history.

Data on the mayoral election released on Friday found Bloomberg’s run for a third term in office, which required special legislation overturning a city law that held the mayor to a maximum of two terms, was the most expensive campaign in municipal history, the Times said.

Bloomberg, the richest man in a city with no shortage of millionaires, surpassed past campaign expenditures of $85 million in 2005 and $74 million in 2001, the report said.

The spending continued until the election’s final hours, as Bloomberg’s campaign placed prerecorded calls shortly before polls closed in which the mayor implored voters to go out and vote for him.

Bloomberg defeated city comptroller William Thompson by fewer than five percentage points, a margin far smaller than polls had predicted, after he pressed the City Council to change the city’s voter-approved term-limits law last year to allow him to run for a third term.