Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg's campaign manager Kevin Sheekey defended former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's decision to enter the primary late and to skip early states. Sheekey said Bloomberg is afraid Trump is "on a path to victory" and believes he must run to prevent this "existential crisis."
"Mike is getting in this race because he thinks that Donald Trump is an existential crisis and he thinks he's on a path to victory. He's getting in to alter that dynamic," Sheekey said Monday on CNN.
BOLDUAN: This initial rollout, part of a massive nationwide ad buy that's over the next two weeks, at least $37 million on TV ads.
He has a lot of work to do. In the latest polling of voters in early primary states through Super Tuesday, only 20 percent say Bloomberg is a candidate they would consider. And 49 percent say they are not considering him.
So what is the Bloomberg game plan?
Joining me right now is Kevin Sheekey, the campaign manager for Michael Bloomberg's campaign.
Good to see you, Kevin. Thank you being here.
KEVIN SHEEKEY, CAMPAIGN MANAGER, MICHAEL BLOOMBERG PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: Thank you for having me.
BOLDUAN: So you guys are hitting the trail right away. He's heading for Virginia today. We're told in a larger speech he will be making, you'll be very near the largest naval station in the world in Norfolk and he's getting right to the news and talking about the resignation or firing of Navy Secretary Richard Spencer.
Can you clue us in on what his take is?
SHEEKEY: Yes. It's obviously in the news today.
SHEEKEY: Your guest before this talked about president chaos. Obviously, Mike is going to comment on it.
Listen, Mike is getting in this race because he thinks that Donald Trump is an existential crisis and he thinks he's on a path to victory. He's getting in to alter that dynamic.
We'll run a campaign against the president. We'll run a campaign to try to make Mike the Democratic nominee. We'll try and bring those together.
Both of those things are happening right now. Obviously, he will talk about in Virginia the elections that occurred there recently.
Mike, listen, really led a campaign to elect Democrats to the House of delegates down there. It's a very long time that Democrats hold both Houses and the governorship.
It's been a fight for us for a very long time because of all the illegal guns that come out of the state of Virginia and flow to the rest of the country, an issue for the environment.
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: But Bloomberg has talked about the impact from a private sector, from the outside in on political process. Just in September, eight weeks ago, when I asked him, he said truth of the matter is when you look at the layout of who is going to vote and where the country is, I would be very unlikely to get elected.
That was eight weeks ago. What's changed?
SHEEKEY: We're focused on defeating Trump. If you look at the polls -- and people can't focus on this -- the general election is in six states, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Florida and Arizona, and that's the whole general election.
Right now, Donald Trump is winning. He is winning that election. It's very tough for people who don't live in New York or California to understand that, but that's what's happening.
Mike was doing everything he could from the sidelines and finally decided it wasn't enough to sit on the sidelines and he needed to do what he could to alter that dynamic. So that's what we're going to try to do.