With former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg still teetering on a decision to join the race, at least one late-entrant has decided to give it a go. Former Massachusets Governor Deval Patrick has decided to join the Democratic primary and formally announce his intention to run for president.
You may be asking yourself why would Patrick decide at this late stage to announce a run in a primary that began back in the Spring? That’s a great question, and Patrick does give us some kind of an answer:
In his announcement video, Patrick signaled his intention to offer optimism over strict progressive ideology, presenting himself as a candidate who will strive to unify deep divisions in the country. His words echoed similar strains from several of his new rivals.
“I admire and respect the candidates in the Democratic field. They bring a richness of ideas and experience and a depth of character that makes me proud to be a Democrat,” Patrick said in his announcement video. “But if the character of the candidates is an issue in every election, this time is about the character of the country.”
Desire to remove President Trump? Check.
Desire to improve the “character of the country”? Check.
Desire to unify America? Check.
What then, if I may ask, is Deval Patrick bringing to the table that two-dozen other Democrats haven’t already been trying to accomplish over the past ten months or so? Does Patrick have some massive groundswell of a base just waiting for him to run so they can throw their money at him and support him in droves? That doesn’t appear to be the case.
As NBC reports, Patrick ruled out a 2020 bid when asked about it earlier this year. For months, we listed Patrick as a “Possible” candidate on the 2020 list but then it seemed as if he was taking a pass on the race.
Then, for some reason, Patrick decided the current Democratic field isn’t quite good enough:
His decision to enter the primary comes against the backdrop of the realities of the political calendar — the filing deadline in all-important New Hampshire is Friday — as well as continued consternation from some Democrats about whether the current field presents viable options to beat President Donald Trump in 2020.
He doesn’t come right out and say it anywhere, but clearly, with a smorgasbord of candidates already in the race, Patrick seems to think he can somehow brush them all aside and convince voters that he and he alone is the candidate to take on President Trump.
Patrick served as Massachusetts governor from 2007 through 2015 and he was fairly popular in the state, maintaining a positive approval rating throughout his term. Still, one has to wonder why more Democrats continue to feel the need to enter the race.
As we noted days ago, the deadline for registration in the 2020 New Hampshire primary is on Friday, Nov. 15. Anyone hoping to get their name on the first-in-the-nation primary ballot will need to be fully filed as a candidate, and get their paperwork up to the Granite State to be included. It looks as if Patrick wanted to jump in and get his name listed given that New Hampshire is the neighbor to his home state of Massachusetts. If he has a shot at picking up votes anywhere, it’s in his home region of the Northeast.
Patrick won’t be anywhere close to a debate stage in November or December, but there’s theoretically time for him to build some recognition before the January and February debates roll around. He’ll need some very high poll numbers and a massive list of donors to make the cut, but as the field narrows, it could be possible, however unlikely.
In the grand scheme, Patrick’s campaign probably won’t go very far. His announcement is being overshadowed by impeachment hearings, and he’ll basically be lost in the news cycle.
Absent the debate stage, most voters won’t know who he is or know that he’s running for president.