According to a Des Moines Register analysis of data from Kantar Media, “more than 10,500 television ads related to the 2020 presidential elections have already aired on broadcast and cable channels across the United States this year. More than half of those ads have been on Iowa television channels.”
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) took a significant step toward a potential presidential run in 2020 by forming a political committee that will allow him to boost his national profile, the Colorado Sun reports.
“The term-limited Democrat created a federal leadership PAC called Giddy Upthat can collect as much as $5,000 a year from donors — money that he can use to cover his political travel, develop policy proposals and donate to other candidates.”
The Times of London, which is probably not the most reliable source for American politics, reports that Michael Bloomberg “has told confidants that he is planning to join the presidential race, in which several leading business figures could follow the example of Donald Trump and throw their hats in the ring.”
He’ll supposedly run as a Democrat.
Said one source: “Mike Bloomberg told me he is going to run in 2020. He has the money to see it through while other candidates knock themselves out.”
“When Joe Biden speaks at the national dinner for the Human Rights Campaign on Saturday night, he’ll find himself at a familiar juncture,” CNN reports.
“Speaking at the same dinner three years ago, he was grappling with a decision to make a late entrance in the 2016 presidential race mere months after the passing of his son Beau.”
“The circumstances are different this time around (it’s earlier in the process), but he is still mulling whether a third run for the White House could be the charm as he starts a campaign blitz for Democrats ahead of the midterm elections.”
“The most telling split among 2020 Democratic hopefuls won’t be over policy, but whether to match President Trump’s scorched-earth tactics,” top Democrats tell Axios.
Said one veteran of Democratic presidential campaigns: “The key question is: How crazy will Trump make us? How far out there will you go to be like Trump?”
“A strategist for one of the 2020 candidate told me this calibration will be tough: Primary voters hunger for ‘someone to descend to Trump’s tactics.’ But general-election voters are more likely to prefer ‘a hopeful message about making government boring again.'”
Bill Kristol, one of President Trump’s most vocal opponents, told CNBC that he is creating a “political war machine” to launch a primary challenge to the commander in chief in 2020.
“He’s engaged with three potential Republican primary candidates who are outspoken critics of the president: Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska, outgoing Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona and Ohio Gov. John Kasich.”
Said Kristol: “We are thinking of and doing preliminary work to prepare for a primary run against Trump. People aren’t going to say they will run against Trump unless they have the infrastructure but I’ve been trying to persuade people that it may not be that difficult.”
Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) “is scheduled to visit Iowa next week to campaign for Democrats as he weighs a campaign for the 2020 presidential nomination,” the AP reports.
The Hill: “Allies to Bernie Sanders say the Vermont Independent senator is increasingly likely to make a second bid for the White House in 2020 — once again as a Democrat.”
“Sanders allies increasingly talk more confidently about the likelihood of a second presidential bid. Just a few months ago, the allies were more careful about his potential candidacy.”
President Trump responded to Jamie Dimon’s criticism saying the banker isn’t smart enough to run for his job, Bloomberg reports.
Said Trump: “The problem with banker Jamie Dimon running for President is that he doesn’t have the aptitude or ‘smarts’ & is a poor public speaker & nervous mess – otherwise he is wonderful.”
He added: “I’ve made a lot of bankers, and others, look much smarter than they are with my great economic policy!”
Sen. Lindsey Graham’s (R-SC) “unexplained optimism, his eager attempts to soften Trump’s rough edges, have confused colleagues and caused double-takes across Washington,” the AP reports.
“The South Carolina Republican was McCain’s best friend in the Senate, a self-described student of his politics and personal integrity. But he has deviated dramatically in his approach to the tempestuous and divisive president. While others stayed their distance — McCain perhaps most of all — Graham has gone all in, transforming himself into liaison, translator and, critics say, enabler of the president.”
“Graham has his own political motivations. His pivot comes as he is gearing up for his own re-election in 2020. The senator is popular in his deeply conservative state, but opposition to the president could mean risking a primary challenge.”
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) “is edging closer to a potential run for president, following what he called an ‘encouraging’ summer mulling a campaign,” Politico reports.
Said Hickenlooper: “What I saw was an interest … a genuine interest in terms of what we’ve done in Colorado.”
“Hickenlooper, one of several current and former Democratic governors considering running in 2020, said he has not yet made a decision about the race. But in a sign that his political operation is ramping up, he will travel to the Southeast this month to help the campaigns of Democratic gubernatorial candidates Andrew Gillum in Florida and Stacey Abrams in Georgia.”
J.P. Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon “made some interesting comments on today’s political affairs, even though he’s said publicly he won’t run for president and is committed to head the bank for the next five years,” CNBC reports.
Said Dimon: “I think I could beat Trump… because I’m as tough as he is, I’m smarter than he is… I can’t beat the liberal side of the Democratic party.”
Dimon later backtracked, telling Reuters: “I should not have said it. I’m not running for President.”
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) “is endorsing and cutting checks to a slate of candidates in early-voting states who could help him wage a long-shot bid for president in 2020,” Politico reports.
“Merkley’s Blue Wave Project PAC on Tuesday will issue its first wave of endorsements: Of the seven candidates he’s backing, two are congressional candidates in Iowa and one in Nevada. The next set of endorsements is expected to deliberately include candidates in New Hampshire.”
“Potential 2020 presidential contender Cory Booker (D) will come to South Carolina — a crucial early primary state — to campaign for James Smith, the Democratic nominee for governor,” The State reports.
“South Carolina has become an important test for White House contenders. It’s traditionally the first big test of a presidential candidate’s ability to win votes in the South and has been particularly significant for non-Southerners aiming to prove they have appeal in the region.”
Five Democrats with knowledge of the site selection process for the Democratic National Convention tell Politico that the race is between Houston and Milwaukee.
“Heat, humidity and hurricanes were already among the factors weighing against Miami Beach. Some members worried about traffic and Miami Beach’s hard-partying reputation, which might muddy convention messaging. They’re also not crazy about the consideration of cruise ships as options for housing some delegates. Finally, there’s sensitivity to hosting yet another convention in the Eastern time zone while trying to portray a party that’s not anchored on the coasts.”
Said one DNC member: “Houston and Milwaukee are the only viable candidates right now. The weather, the logistics. Also, the imagery. What does the party want to portray from its convention? Do you want bikinis on the beach? Or do you want people in the heartland or a diversity of people in Texas?”
New York Magazine: “Republican pros have, in recent weeks, quietly settled on new conventional wisdom: If Donald Trump is not impeached first, he is likely to face a primary challenge — of some sort — in 2020. The matter was regarded as an open question for most of 2018, but a new emergent consensus among the party’s consultants and strategists has taken root after Paul Manafort’s conviction and Michael Cohen’s implication of the president in federal court.”
“And New Hampshire — fertile ground historically for political insurgencies — is likely to be the place were we see the first clues about who the candidate will be, and what form exactly the challenge will take.”