Although it is the 2018 elections that are the primary focus at this point, looking forward to 2020 is very much in the forefront of most American’s minds. With Trump insiders already hinting that he may not run in the next presidential election (it’s a difficult campaign to imagine considering all of the rousing campaign promises his rabid fans were so fond of since he didn’t fulfill his “lock her up” promise about Hillary, or repeal and replace Obamacare “on day one,” and he hasn’t built a wall and made “Mexico pay for it”), and the door may be wide open for a whole new crop of candidates on both sides.
Democratic lawmakers were interviewed by The Hill and asked to identify who they felt were the top contenders for the next presidential election. According to those interviews, here are the top six hopefuls for 2020.
5. Deval Patrick (D-MA)
A former governor of Massachusetts. Patrick is being strongly encouraged to throw his hat in the ring by those in Obama’s inner circle, including Obama’s chief campaign strategist, David Axelrod, and Obama’s senior adviser, Valerie Jarrett. Patrick is commonly noted among those insiders as the natural follow-up to Obama’s presidency due to his friendship with and shared beliefs of President Obama.
Patrick has, however, made no clear indication as to whether or not he intends to run.
‘I’m trying to think about how to be helpful, because I care about the country, and I’m a patriot first. It’s way, way too soon to be making plans for 2020. So I’ll just leave it at that.’
For Deval’s amazing 2016 DNC speech, see video below:
5. Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
As a U.S. Senator, Brown has risen to national attention for his beliefs on big business, big corporations, and wage fairness for workers. As a politician who policy ideas are matched more closely to Bernie Sanders’s than Hillary Clinton’s were, Brown may have great appeal for young voters who abdicated from their true blue stance under Obama to an anti-establishment view against Clinton.
‘If white working-class people think we look down on them and we use terms like the “Rust Belt,” which demeans their work and diminishes them in some ways, that’s a problem. You counteract that, in part by empathizing, saying that we value work. That means you fight for minimum wage, you fight for the overtime rule, you fight against misclassification of jobs.’
For Brown’s speech at the DNC in 2016, see video below:
4. Kamala Harris (D-CA)
As only the second black woman to hold a seat in Congress, Harris has gained national attention for her intelligent, sharp questioning of Trump appointees during confirmation hearings and her public fight against Trump policies. While her views on politics are widely considered more centrist, her unwavering stance on civil rights and criminal justice reform are likely to appeal to Democratic voters.
Her views on what success will mean for the party of blue in 2020 also resonates with many swing voters who went to the polls for Trump in 2016.
‘The issues are not simple, so the message is not going to be simple. but essentially it’s about telling the American public we see them.’
For Harris’s powerful speech at the Women’s March following the inauguration of President Trump, see video below:
3. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Warren’s years in politics, with her pro-worker, anti-corporate policies, has earned her a place in young millennials’ book of heroes among the Democratic Party. With a lot of the same appeal as Bernie Sanders, who presented a weighty challenge in 2016 to Hillary Clinton’s more establishment views, Warren is highly respected and has massive appeal as the potential first woman to possibly sit in the Oval Office.
The Massachusetts senator has also given no indication as to whether or not she might run in 2020.
‘We can’t be a party and we can’t be a nation that says, ‘Horse race to horse race, let’s just see what happens every four years and let’s get all excited about speculating who’s going to be in the race in four years…I get up everyday worried about the fights in front of us right now.’
For Warren’s inspirational speech at the 2017 Center for American Progress conference earlier this year, see video below:
2. Joe Biden (D-DE)
As the former vice president under Barack Obama, Biden is likely to appeal to many of the voters who backed Obama’s run and elected him twice to the White House. There is no greater indication of how nervous Biden makes the GOP than the fact that the scandal politics against him began as soon as he said publicly that he had regrets about not running against Trump in 2016 after the death of his beloved son, Beau Biden, sidelined him in his time of grief.
‘No woman or man should announce they are running for president unless they can answer two questions: One, do they believe they are the most qualified person for that moment? I believed I was — but was I prepared to give my whole heart, my whole soul, and all my intention to the endeavor? And I knew I wasn’t.’
For Biden’s heart-wrenching speech at the DNC in 2008, where he accepted the nomination as Obama’s vice presidential running mate, see video below:
1. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
Even as an Independent rather than a Democrat, it is Bernie Sanders who most represents what younger voters hope is the direction of the Democratic Party. His views on universal healthcare, Democratic socialism, and getting big money out of politics has broad appeal among millennials and other voters concerned with the more corporate sponsored candidates. The Independent candidate was chosen, for just that reason, to head up the Democratic voter outreach for the fight against Trump.
For Sanders’s incendiary speech at the People’s Summit in 2017, see video below:
Featured image via Getty/The Washington Post