Hark! Folks Not Running for President in 2020
The segue on the old Rocky & Bullwinkle cartoon would often go “And now for something completely different.” So did Monty Python. These days, folks NOT running for president certainly qualifies as something different, and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) & former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg all pass on 2020.
Michael Bloomberg seemed to be moving towards a run for president. The former New York Mayor was hiring staff, making trips to early voting states, and his team was thinking big about a nationwide strategy that would be funded by his billions.
But on Tuesday, Bloomberg opted out, saying in an op-ed that he was “clear-eyed about the difficulty of winning the Democratic nomination in such a crowded field.”
After an initial burst of Democrats joining the presidential race, decisions this week by Bloomberg, Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley and Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown signal how other would-be candidates are shying away from the race – and in some cases it’s less about the size of the field, and more about who is still likely to be in it.
Sources close to Bloomberg say that former Vice President Joe Biden’s potential entrance into the 2020 fray made an uphill, but potentially winnable, primary slog even steeper for the New York billionaire. While Bloomberg’s path to the nomination was narrow already, “the path is really narrow with Joe in the race,” one source close to Bloomberg told NBC News, speaking on condition of anonymity so as to speak more candidly
I’m in the minority of thinking Joe is just being a tease and doesn’t get in, but could be wrong. If he does run, his reputation of being a problematic, gaffe-prone candidate already reared its head this past week when he complimented VP Mike Pence, only to be quickly corrected that flippant common courtesy like that won’t be tolerated. But who knows, maybe he will. Till then, we wait for the Democratic field to finish taking shape.