Now that we got that messy midterm process out of the way, let’s get on with the main attraction. Democrats are already organizing Presidential campaigns, and several have already been visiting early states like Iowa and New Hampshire. However, a new poll of registered Democratic voters finds that none of the names that have been floating around, so far, are causing any kind of excitement for the 2020 Democratic primary. In fact, the most popular choice is “None of the above.”
Report from The Hill on this humorous and very early look at the 2020 Democratic field:
The survey, conducted among 680 registered voters who identified themselves as Democrats or independents, found that “none of the above” was the most popular choice among potential 2020 challengers to President Trump.
Thirty percent of the sample said they would prefer that “none of the above” become the Democratic nominee when asked to choose among former Vice President Joe Biden, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D), Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders (I), New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker (D), California Sen. Kamala Harris (D), former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Twenty-five percent of respondents said Biden would be their preferred nominee. Sanders, who ran in the Democratic presidential primary in 2016, came in second with 18 percent.
Twelve percent of the independents and Democrats surveyed picked Clinton, Sanders’s one-time presidential rival, who signaled a willingness to run again, saying in an October interviewer that she would still “like to be president.”
Other candidates attracted even less support. Harris, Bloomberg and Warren were each the top choice for just 4 percent of respondents.
The American Barometer survey was conducted on Nov. 5-6 among 680 registered voters by the HarrisX polling company. The sampling margin of error is 3.76 percentage points.
Here’s the breakdown in an easier to read format:
39% – None of the above
25% – Joe Biden
18% – Bernie Sanders
12% – Hillary Clinton
4% – Kamala Harris
4% – Michael Bloomberg
4% – Elizabeth Warren
It’s not too surprising to see a diluted field this early out. Much of the apprehension likely stems from Democrats wondering which candidate can best take on Donald Trump. Hillary Clinton tried, and despite her seasoned campaign and political experience, she fell very short of closing the deal with voters.
Perhaps polls like this will entice more Democrats in the race if there doesn’t appear to be any early front-runners. Democrats need to select a candidate carefully to avoid a situation where Trump can easily outmaneuver them. Elizabeth Warren has already made several mistakes, including her recent attempt to prove her Native American heritage, which ended up backfiring and proving that she may not have what it takes to challenge Trump in a national campaign.
Michael Bloomberg would be formidable in that, as a billionaire, he could self-fund and overcome the built-in advantage Donald Trump would have as the incumbent.
Looking at polling of the GOP field from this same time period in 2014 would have given Republicans Jeb Bush as the candidate of choice by 44% of the vote, and we know how it actually turned out.
It’s OK for Democrats to spend time surveying the field before joining a team. The bench is deep in 2020 and the process will be grueling since there is enthusiasm and fury among the Democratic base to take the fight directly to Trump. Winning the House on Tuesday was a good appetizer for them, but they’ll be eagerly awaiting the main course of a Presidential campaign which is focused on hammering the President on a daily basis.