Yesterday, Senator Elizabeth Warren announced that she will be running for president in 2020. Well, to be fair, she announced that she has launched a campaign “exploratory committee” to determine whether she has a chance at winning. Rarely, if ever, has such a committee in modern times concluded that the potential candidate stands no chance and should go back to the farm, so in essence, Senator Warren announced her intent to run. There are at least 32 others who have either announced their intent or are said to be considering a run, namely …
- Joe Biden (former Vice President under Obama)
- Senator Kamala Harris (California)
- Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont)
- John Kerry (former Secretary of State under Obama)
- Julián Castro (former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under Obama)
- Senator Cory Booker (New Jersey)
- Michael Bloomberg (former Mayor of New York)
- Eric Holder (former Attorney General under Obama)
- Michael Avenatti (attorney for Stormy Daniels, Trump’s former paramour)
- Senator Kirsten Gilibrand (New York)
- Senator Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota)
- Deval Patrick (former Governor of Massachusetts)
- Governor Steve Bullock (Montana)
- Representative John Delaney (Maryland)
- Beto O’Rourke (former Senate candidate from Texas)
- Mayor Eric Garcetti (Los Angeles)
- Senator Sherrod Brown (Ohio)
- Senator Michael F. Bennet (Colorado)
- Senator Jeff Merkley (Oregon)
- Senator Bob Casey (Pennsylvania)
- Senator Chris Murphy (Connecticut)
- Mayor Pete Buttigieg (South Bend, Indiana)
- Mark Cuban (owner of the Dallas Mavericks sports team)
- Mayor Bill de Blasio (New York)
- Representative Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii)
- Andrew Gillum (former candidate for Governor of Florida)
- Governor John Hickenlooper (Colorado)
- Governor Jay Inslee (Washington)
- Mitch Landrieu (former Mayor of New Orleans)
- Terry McAuliffe (former Governor of Virginia)
- Representative Seth Moulton (Massachusetts)
- Richard Ojeda (West Virginia State Senator)
And those are just the ones who are already talking the talk. I actually left a few out, such as Howard Schultz, the former Chairman of Starbucks, and entertainer/philanthropist Oprah Winfrey, for I think they are beyond the realm of what is reasonable. Then again, I said the same about Donald Trump four years ago. Sigh. Some even speculate that Hillary Clinton might give it another shot. Personally, I think (and hope) that she is far smarter than that.
Now think about this. There is just over 22 months until the 2020 election. That is 672 days, folks. 672 days of listening to the ranting, the babbling, watching the mud-fest and slinging of dirt. Donald Trump on one side and all these others on the other side. Sean Hannity and Jeanine Pirro will be in their element. For 672 days! Shoot me now, please. The title of a podcast on The Washington Post yesterday sums it up: “Goodbye, 2018. Hello, 2020.” In other words, welcome to 2019, the year that wasn’t.
The above list of candidates all have some positive attributes, with the possible exception of Michael Avenatti, who I believe is saying he will run mostly as a publicity stunt anyway. But along with the positive, each one also carries with him/her some baggage. Okay, nobody is perfect, but this is the year the democrats really, really need a perfect candidate, one with no skeletons in the closet, no dirt hiding in their past. Donald Trump’s campaign will be brutal this year and next in digging up dirt and buried skeletons. They will leave no stone unturned. And we will have to listen to it all … every day … ad nauseam. And you thought 2019 would be an improvement over 2018?
Unless I miss my guess, there will likely be somewhere around 25-30 candidates in the running initially. Some will be weeded out in short order, whittling the list down to around 10-12 by the end of this year. Folks … Barnum & Bailey might not be around any longer but trust me … a circus is coming to town.
A circus is exactly what we don’t need. The Democratic Party needs to be the responsible one with candidates who can stand up to close scrutiny and who are focused, who have strong ideologies, well-communicated platforms, and who will not be distracted by mud-slinging and name-calling. They need to be above the fray of the GOP and not wallow in the hog pen with Donald Trump.
Given that there are 22 months yet until the election, and given the above list of potential candidates, some of whom I’ve never even heard of, and in light of my disastrous predictions in 2016, I make no predictions at this point as to whose name will end up on the ballot by November 3rd, 2020. I will make one prediction, however, that alcohol and tobacco sales will increase dramatically this year! It is going to be a looooooong and ugly 22 months. And I voice a serious hope that whoever ultimately becomes the Democratic candidate can stand firm and defeat either Donald Trump or Michael Pence, whichever name is on the GOP ticket by then. Welcome to the never-ending election season!