Saturday, February 2, 2019

Another Hat Lands In The Ring, Con't

Both former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz and NJ Sen. Cory Booker have now entered the 2020 race.  Booker is fighting his own soft on Wall Street record, something that may prove fatal to his hopes, but Schultz's independent bid died within days, as America isn't about to hand the country over to a billionaire jackass who got rich selling $6 coffees.

Change Research conducted a poll from January 31-February 1 of 1,338 likely 2020 general election voters to assess former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz’s potential independent candidacy for President in 2020. 
Schultz is less known to the electorate than other declared and potential presidential candidates (56% have never heard of him or don’t have an opinion). 
Among those who have an opinion, just 4% view him favorably compared to 40% unfavorably — a 10:1 unfavorable to favorable ratio, far higher than any other candidate tested (for comparison, 52% of respondents rate President Trump unfavorably vs. 42% favorably)
Schultz is viewed unfavorably by Democrats (50% unfavorable — 4% favorable), Republicans (43% unfavorable — 4% favorable), and Independents (31% unfavorable — 4% favorable).

Change Research tested hypothetical matchups with and without Schultz of Trump running against different Democrats: Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Beto O’Rourke, and Bernie Sanders, with the order shown randomized. 
Schultz takes an average of four points away from what the Democratic candidate receives in a two-way race, while taking just 1% away from Donald Trump. That means Schultz’s presence in the race makes Trump’s margins between 2 and 4 points better than they would be without him in the race.

So no, at this point all Schultz would do is hurt the Democratic candidate and everyone knows it.  He's looking for the exit, and a lot of centrists are suddenly feeling rather scared.

The rising Democratic enthusiasm for big government liberalism is forcing a trio of leading 2020 contenders to rethink jumping in, several sources tell Axios.

What's happening: Michael Bloomberg and former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, each of whom were virtual locks to run, are having serious second thoughts after watching Democrats embrace "Medicare for All," big tax increases and the Green New Deal. Joe Biden, who still wants to run, is being advised to delay any plans to see how this lurch to the left plays out. If Biden runs, look for Bloomberg and McAuliffe to bow out, the sources tell us.

That would leave Biden as the only real Obama-era centrist in the race unless Hillary decides to come back, and somehow, I don't think either one is going to be a primary favorite come this time next year.

Cory Booker on the other hand has more of a chance, but he has a lot of Senate baggage to overcome, especially on Wall Street.

Mr. Booker announced his candidacy on the first day of Black History Month to the sound of snare drums and with a clarion call for unity. In an email to supporters, he drew on the spirit of the civil rights movement as he laid out his vision for a country that will “channel our common pain back into our common purpose.”

“The history of our nation is defined by collective action; by interwoven destinies of slaves and abolitionists; of those born here and those who chose America as home; of those who took up arms to defend our country, and those who linked arms to challenge and change it,” Mr. Booker said in an accompanying video.

The Democratic field now features two black contenders — Mr. Booker and Senator Kamala Harris of California — and four women: Ms. Harris, Senators Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand, and Representative Tulsi Gabbard. There is also a Hispanic candidate, Julián Castro, the former Housing and Urban Development secretary under President Barack Obama, and a gay candidate, Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Ind.

The field reflects a party in which women and candidates of color have injected a surge of new energy, and given urgency to the Democrats’ imperative of ousting President Trump. And it follows midterm elections in which women and minority candidates for Congress won in record numbers and have assumed some key positions in party ranks.

“It shows the growth of the country and that many of us who have struggled for civil and human rights feel that we are in a new moment that we wanted,’’ the Rev. Al Sharpton said in an interview. He added: “It’s like the new America against the old America and a lot of Americans who are older and younger want to make sure they participate in the new America.”

We'll see.  At this point, I'm ignoring all the polls until 2020 rolls around, because frankly at this stage they don't matter (unless you're Howard Schultz and polling at a 4% favorability number.)

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