Last week, heading into the Q3 reporting deadline, we received hundreds of donations and set a new high-water mark. It’s amazing that our campaign is growing so quickly. Please know that I appreciate every bit of support, particularly when someone donates.
I am writing this from Des Moines, where I addressed 250 Democrats Friday night. The speech I gave was quite similar to the one that I gave in Clear Lake in August. This is my 4th trip to Iowa, and I’ll be making my 4th visit to New Hampshire soon.
Earlier this week, a friend sent me the following quote from Donald Trump from a rally in West Virginia this past weekend:
“Oh, I dream of these people every night,” discussing his prospective Democratic opponents in 2020. “The only thing I worry about is that some total unknown that nobody ever heard of comes along.” Donald Trump – September 29th, 2018
My friend sent it to me excitedly saying, “He’s talking about you.”
I saw this and thought two things:
After Donald Trump became President, I figured he would be a one-term President and was a 50-50 bet to even make it through one term. After all, he lost the popular vote and barely eked out a win (with some help). Now, I fear he has a strong chance to win re-election in 2020. He has an 84%+ approval rating among Republicans. He built an $88 million war chest as of July, and that number is only growing. He has the bully pulpit of the Presidency and controls every news cycle. His irresponsible corporate tax cut has boosted profits in the short term. He has stacked his Cabinet with billionaires who know how to fundraise.
The reality is that he’s going to be a formidable opponent in 2020.
The people regarded as the front-runners for the Democratic nomination are Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, and Bernie Sanders. Mike Bloomberg, Cory Booker, and Kamala Harris could easily be included, too.
I know and like several of these people. But 3 of them will be 78 or older in 2020. Each of them has something of a defined ceiling. Most of them have fairly established political identities.
Right now, 27% of Americans identify as Democrats, 26% as Republicans, and 44% as Independents according to Gallup. Many of these Independents lean one way or another, but the political parties command less and less popular enthusiasm than in the past. You could see it in the union workers who voted for Trump despite their leadership’s endorsing of Hillary Clinton.
I believe Donald Trump is right that the best chance of beating him is someone new. Someone who lacks baggage and comes from outside the political establishment. Someone who has not spent years in D.C. Someone younger, with ideas and solutions that would benefit the American people and defy easy political categorization.
Though most of my support comes from Democrats, many of my supporters are Republicans or Independents – including many of you reading this. One thing I’ve heard from people across the country is, “You don’t sound like any Democrat I’ve heard before.”
To that, I respond, “Thank you.”
My campaign team and I say that we are running a high-variance campaign. We have a much lower floor than most other candidates – I may never make a dent in the national polls or win over the establishment. But we also have a much higher ceiling. With your help, we can spark a movement that changes the course of history and transforms our politics. We can bring real solutions into the mainstream, solutions that will improve people’s lives. We can move our society forward and confront the real challenges of the 21st Century. And if we work our hearts out and I do become the Democratic nominee, I would have a much stronger chance of beating Donald Trump in the general election in 2020 than politicians representing the status quo.
A man in Iowa said to me the other day, “I would love to see you debate Donald Trump. He wouldn’t stand a chance.”
I think he may be right. And if you don’t believe me, just ask Donald Trump.
Thank you for your support! We are gearing up for a national tour in November and we need your help. Please spread the word about the campaign, make a contribution, buy some gear, or sign up to volunteer. I hope to meet many of you in the weeks ahead. Let’s show our fellow Americans that amazing things are yet possible in this country. Let’s find our ceiling.