After being hammered with an unending barrage of criticism from the left after hinting at his intention to run an independent campaign for the presidency, former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said Monday that he was more certain than ever about America’s need for a centrist candidate in 2020. Denying that his campaign would result in the re-election of President Donald Trump, Schultz said that Democrats should look at their own house if they wanted to understand why Trump stood an excellent chance of getting a second term in office.
“The stakes are too high to cross our fingers and hope the Democratic Party nominates a moderate who can win over enough independents and disaffected Republicans, and even fellow Democrats, to defeat Trump next year,” Schultz wrote in a blog post. “That any opponent can oust Trump, no matter how far to the radical left they are, is a fallacy. Those so concerned about a centrist independent being a spoiler should perhaps ask another question: Will the eventual Democratic nominee be the party’s own version of a spoiler? Of course, it’s too early to know who the nominee will be. We must let the process play out. And that same standard should apply to a discussion of a possible independent candidacy.”
Schultz went on to assure his critics that he would not be running for president as a stunt or as a means through which to prove a point. He believes he has a viable path to the White House.
“Polling consistently shows that more than 60 percent of respondents believe our two-party system is broken and that it’s time for a centrist candidate who is unaffiliated with either party to be president,” he wrote. “To be very clear, I firmly believe there is an unprecedented appetite for a centrist independent presidential candidate, and that there is a credible path for an independent to win more than the necessary 270 electoral votes — a key criteria in my consideration of whether to run.”
Our thoughts are many. One, if the 2016 election proved anything, it’s that we can’t put too much stock in the collective wisdom of Washington “experts.” Every single one of them predicted that Trump would not be the Republican nominee, and then they predicted again that he would not be the president. They were sorely mistaken on both counts, so we can hardly take them too seriously when they predict what Howard Schultz’s candidacy will or won’t accomplish.
Two, having said that, every third-party candidate in American history has served only to hurt the party to which he is most-closely aligned. When it comes to Schultz, an avowed social justice warrior who can’t go three sentences without bashing Trump, that party is undoubtedly the Democrats. So it’s reasonable to assume that no matter what he personally thinks his chances are, the overwhelming likelihood is that his candidacy will be a boost to Trump’s chances. The Democrats know this, which is why they are on Schultz like white on rice.
Our only concern is that Schultz’s potential candidacy really will cause the Democrats to wake up and nominate someone who isn’t reading The Communist Manifesto in their spare time. Trump’s best shot at re-election comes at the expense of the Democrats nominating one of their current crop of far-left loonies. If they actually get some sense and push a halfway-reasonable “centrist” liberal to the forefront, we’re going to be in for a fight.