TV Judge Judith Sheindlin, prominently known as “Judge Judy,” has officially endorsed former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg for president, appearing in a 30-second ad debuted Monday titled “Judge Him.”
“Mike Bloomberg has done amazing things and will be a truly great president,” Sheindlin says assertively in what appear to be judicial chambers. “No one comes close to Mike Bloomberg’s executive achievement, government experience and impactful philanthropy.”
The ad kicks off Sheindlin’s public campaigning for Bloomberg and marks an unusual move by the 77-year-old celebrity judge who has typically shied away from making political endorsements.
The 2020 race however, appears to be an exception for Sheindlin, who has been promoting Bloomberg since October publishing an op-ed in USA Today weeks before Bloomberg’s entrance into the race arguing that the billionaire businessman should succeed Donald Trump in the White House.
“I have carefully stayed away from politics for 50 years, except to vote,” Sheindlin wrote. “But times have changed in our country, and I believe the moment has come for me to step out from behind the curtain.”
Appearing on HBO’s “Real Time With Bill Maher” in November days leading up to the former New York mayor’s announcement, Sheindlin emphasized her support for Bloomberg, telling the HBO host in a one-on-one interview that Bloomberg is the only candidate running in a crowded race with executive experience running a major American city.
“If you think about it, Michael Bloomberg is the only one who’s running who has executive experience running the biggest city in the United States,” Sheindlin said. Current New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio dropped out of the race in September.
Sheindlin later went on ABC’s “The View” Monday to tout her endorsement paraded in the campaign’s new ad.
Judge Judy on endorsing former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg for president: “There was no other voice for me other than a voice of someone who has experience in governance." https://t.co/f8u2wbJuik pic.twitter.com/u2oiwe20Ya
— The View (@TheView) January 6, 2020
Celebrity endorsements typically offer minimal value to the candidates they support, but Judge Judy’s could provide some substantive value to bolster Bloomberg’s candidacy as Oprah Winfrey’s endorsement of Barack Obama did in 2007. Some experts estimate Winfrey’s backing of then-candidate Barack Obama propelled the freshman senator’s presidential bid by approximately one million votes playing a pivotal role in securing the Democratic nomination over Hillary Clinton.
Sheindlin indeed enjoys a unique popular public reputation among voters that potentially offers her endorsement some serious weight.
According to a 2013 poll from Reader’s Digest, more Americans trust the reality TV judge more than the United States Supreme Court. A survey published in 2016 further illustrates Judge Judy’s image among voters revealing that nearly 10 percent of college graduates believe Judge Judy is a supreme court justice.
Prior to her rise as the queen of courtroom TV beginning in 1996, Sheindlin served as a family court judge in New York City for 10 years, whose blunt persona in the courtroom earned her national media attention in the early 1990s ultimately culminating in a television courtroom series.
Sheindlin is now out campaigning for Bloomberg, who is also 77, and is expected to join the former mayor for a campaign stop in Texas this weekend.
The new ad featuring Sheindlin is also likely to play well with a key voting bloc that could be beneficial to Bloomberg, considering Sheindlin’s reality TV audience is female and racially diverse.
Since his last-minute leap into the crowded contest, Bloomberg has already spent more money than any other candidate on television ads this cycle after having dumped more than $100 million on advertising by the end of the year. The former mayor however, is struggling to qualify for next week’s debate despite meeting the Democratic National Committee’s polling threshold. Bloomberg needs to show more than 225,000 unique contributions to qualify for a podium on stage before the Iowa caucuses.
Although he’ll likely miss the January debate with only days left to qualify, Bloomberg’s campaign has made clear its strategy to invest in a longer primary by largely bypassing the early contest states and putting money into super Tuesday states slated to hold their primaries in early March.