I’ve been keeping my eye on Howard Schultz. I’ve noticed that he is getting no love from the Democrats, even though he would probably like to head the Democratic Party ticket in 2020.
Howard Schultz is exactly what the Democratic Party needs: a center-left candidate who is pro-business, and progressive but not revolutionary on social issues.
Schultz, however, recently stirred a backlash among Democrats. He had the gall to debunk Kamala Harris’s unicorn plan to abolish private health insurance overnight, and replace it with a top-down federal government plan. In a country as large and diverse as the United States, socialized medicine would be an unmitigated disaster, and Howard Schultz knows this–as does anyone with a basic grasp of economics.
Schultz was correct in pointing out that the Republicans have tended to ignore the healthcare crisis, whereas Democrats can think only in terms of socializing health insurance. An effective solution likely would involve a role for government; but it would be fundamentally market-based (a dirty word if you’re a Democrat, nowadays.)
The Democratic Party is also currently obsessed with identity-group politics. Democratic strategist Symone Sanders has said that she doesn’t want “white people” leading the party anymore. This racialist sentiment would have been regarded as radical in the Democratic Party of 2000. But not in the Democratic Party that approaches 2020.
The first priority of the Democrats heading into 2020 will be “diversity”. In practice, this will likely mean a fire-breathing radical like Kamala Harris or Julian Castro.
And if that happens, the Democrats can forget about the suburban “soccer mom” vote.
America is by nature a centrist country. Most Americans are not radicals of either the far-right or the far-left variety.
Ideological indulgence therefore has a cost in national elections. The GOP discovered that in the midterms of 2018. The Democratic Party will relearn it in the presidential elections of 2020.