Starbucks’ Howard Schultz ‘seriously considering’ independent run for president
Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is eying a 2020 presidential campaign. But instead of running as a Democrat, the party he has previously favored, he will run as an independent.
The question I think we all should be asking ourselves is: at this time in America when there’s so much evidence that our political system is broken – that both parties at the extreme are not representing the silent majority of the American people – isn’t there a better way? pic.twitter.com/Gy1wf1cf8F
— Howard Schultz (@HowardSchultz) January 28, 2019
“I am seriously thinking of running for president,” Schultz said on 60 Minutes Sunday evening. “I will run as a centrist independent, outside of the two party system.”
“We are living at a most fragile time,” he said. “Not only the fact that this president is not qualified to be the president, but the fact that both parties are consistently not doing what is necessary on behalf of the American people and are engaged every single day in revenge politics.
Schultz is the businessman who lead Starbucks to worldwide domination. He is also known as the former owner of the Seattle SuperSonics and is regarded as being largely responsible for the city losing its beloved NBA team.
On 60 Minutes, Schultz said he doesn’t classify himself as a Democrat or Republican and discussed his disappointment with the national debt.
“We are sitting today with approximately $21.5 trillion of debt,” Schultz said. “Which is a reckless example, not only of Republicans but of Democrats as well, of a reckless failure of their Constitutional responsibility.”
“I want to see America win,” he said. “I don’t care if you are a Democrat, independent, Libertarian, Republican — bring me your ideas and I will be an independent person who will embrace those ideas because I am not, in any way, in bed with a party.”
Schultz followed up with The Seattle Times to say the nation’s political environment “is filled with a level of toxicity we have not seen, certainly in my lifetime.” The Times notes that Schultz is embarking on a book tour over the next few weeks to promote his new title, “From the Ground UP: a Journey to Reimagine the Promise of America.” Tina Podlodowski, chair of the Washington state Democratic Party, told The Times that Schultz is selfish and that his presidential goals aren’t “about bringing people together. It’s about one person: Howard Schultz.”
About one week ago, Podlodowski discussed Schutlz’s potential presidential run saying “Just. Don’t.”
The concern is that dividing up the voting pool with more candidates, instead of a strong opposition, will help Trump get re-elected. Indeed, Trump did not win the majority of votes in the 2016 election, rather won the electoral college. His opponent Hillary Clinton received about 3 million more votes in the general election.
“Too much is at stake to make this about the ambitions of any one person,” Podlodowski said one week ago. “The 2020 race for president has to be about relegating Donald Trump to the dustbin of history, and reclaiming the Oval Office for our people and our future.”
She’s not the only person to express that sentiment. Julian Castro told CNN that Schultz’s independent run “would provide Donald Trump with his best hope of getting re-elected.” Castro is a former secretary of Housing and Urban Development who is also running for the Democratic nomination.
Following the news that Schultz may run as an independent, President Donald Trump tweeted that Schultz is not the “smartest person” and says he doesn’t have the guts to run.
Howard Schultz doesn’t have the “guts” to run for President! Watched him on @60Minutes last night and I agree with him that he is not the “smartest person.” Besides, America already has that! I only hope that Starbucks is still paying me their rent in Trump Tower!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 28, 2019