A Short Explanation Of Why Democrats Are So Angry That Howard Schultz Is Running For President.


Every day there are, quite literally, hundreds of politically-orientated stories online to sift through. And as more Democrats announce their plans to run in 2020, and as we inch towards the first round of debates starting in June, this is all only going to intensify. So yeah, there’s a lot to digest.

Which is why there’s no way The Twenties Club will be able (or willing) to cover everything. Therefore my plan is to simply extract stuff you might find interesting, and then translate it into jargon that makes sense to both of us. Over the weekend, political analysts, journalists, former Obama-staffers, current Democrats, and even President Trump took to media outlets and Twitter to express their anger and panic over news that a guy called Howard Schultz was rumoured to be running in 2020. So here’s the tea:

Howard Schultz is a billionaire. The former Starbucks chief executive announced over the weekend that he is preparing to run for President of the United States “as an independent” and has already begun the groundwork to get on the ballot in all 50 states. Running as an independent means running as a third party – outside of the Republican or Democratic spheres. The first and most obvious issue with all of this is Schultz’s ego: the sheer arrogance that a billionaire businessman suddenly wants to serve in government, but instead of first running for state senate or a local position to prove he has the aptitude, he is literally running for President. It’s like saying you want a job at Topshop but instead of working in retail you ask CEO Phillip Green if you can takeover. It’s also arrogant for Schultz to think that running as an independent, on a platform of extraordinary wealth and with next-to-zero progressive policies (he has said Democrat’s are “veering too far to the left”), is the answer to ANY of the questions America has been asking itself since President Trump took the White House.

But the greatest concern about Schultz’s potential run is the likelihood it would result in Trump winning re-election in 2020:

One the Republican side you have Donald Trump who, according to Vox, has already raised more than $100 million for a second term and, historically, American voters like to give the sitting president another four years. On the left you have the increasingly-crowded Democratic field. This pool of progressives will eventually, through public debates and primaries, get whittled down to one candidate and that person will be up against Trump in 2020 and essentially looking to amass all the “anti-Trump” voters. Still with me? Given the strength of the two primary bases, and the way the electoral college system works, there is no way an independent could win. Which is to say, in 2020, an independent candidate would split the anti-Trump voters (some would vote for the Democrat and some would vote for Schultz) and inadvertently end up re-electing Trump for a second turn. The stakes are simply too high. Schultz said he was well aware of the criticism, but said it was misplaced, “I am certainly prepared for the cynics and the naysayers to come out and say this cannot be done, but I don’t agree with them. And I think it’s un-American to say it can’t be done.” 

It seems most Americans would beg to differ.

Header image by Holly Burgess for The Twenties Club