Schatz: Dems will nominate a progressive in 2020

Schatz: Dems will nominate a progressive in 2020
© Anna Moneymaker

Sen. Brian SchatzBrian Emanuel SchatzCongress should lift the ban on medical cannabis access for military veterans Booker introduces bill banning facial recognition tech in public housing Senate Democrat: Colleague was working on fantasy football trade instead of listening to Schumer MORE (D-Hawaii) said a progressive would be nominated as the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee in 2020 but that it would not signify a battle with centrists. 

“…we must reject the premise that this is a fight between moderates and progressives. We are going to nominate a progressive,” Schatz said in a lengthy twitter thread.

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“…the progressive we nominate should also be capable of getting votes from moderates and even republicans. That wouldn’t make them less progressive, that would make them better,” he added.

Democrats are likely to see a crowded field of candidates that will seek to appeal to the party’s progressive wing after the perception that Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonImpeachment hearings don't move needle with Senate GOP GOP divided over impeachment trial strategy 'Too Far Left' hashtag trends on Twitter MORE failed to sufficiently do so in 2016.

Possible candidates include high-profile Democrats such as former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSondland notified Trump officials of investigation push ahead of Ukraine call: report Biden says he won't legalize marijuana because it may be a 'gateway drug' Impeachment hearings don't move needle with Senate GOP MORE, Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBiden says he won't legalize marijuana because it may be a 'gateway drug' Democrats seize on report of FedEx's Bernie Sanders tax bill to slam Trump's tax plan If we want to save earth, we need to change how we eat MORE (Vt.), Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenBiden says he won't legalize marijuana because it may be a 'gateway drug' Democrats seize on report of FedEx's Elizabeth Warren tax bill to slam Trump's tax plan Warren 'fully committed' to 'Medicare for All' MORE (Mass.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisIf we want to save earth, we need to change how we eat New poll shows four top-tier 2020 candidates in Iowa The Democratic race for president may not sort itself out MORE (Calif.), Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandMaloney primary challenger calls on her to return, donate previous campaign donations from Trump Senate confirms controversial circuit court nominee She Should Run launches initiative to expand number of women in political process MORE (N.Y.), Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownOn The Money: Trump asks Supreme Court to block Dem subpoena for financial records | Kudlow 'very optimistic' for new NAFTA deal | House passes Ex-Im Bank bill opposed by Trump, McConnell Warren, Brown press IRS on study reviewing Free File program Sunday shows — New impeachment phase dominates MORE (Ohio) and Rep. Beto O’Rourke (Texas), as well as some with lower national name recognition such as Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean Klobuchar New poll shows four top-tier 2020 candidates in Iowa New poll catapults Buttigieg to frontrunner position in Iowa Election 2020: Why I'm watching Amy and Andy MORE (Minn.), former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick.

Some have already declared they are considering a run or traveled to states with early primaries or caucuses, such as Iowa and New Hampshire. 

Schatz is close with several potential candidates in the Senate. He tweeted that crowded primaries help the party flesh out its platforms and suggested more candidates should throw their hats into the ring.

“…everyone who wants to run should run. Primaries can and do strengthen the Party. If you are a governor or a mayor or a senator or member of the house or TV star - and you think you can help the country, try it!” the Hawaii Democrat said.

While crowded primaries could help the party vet certain policies before an eventual nominee emerges, it could fear a repeat of the Republican 2016 primary in which several experienced politicians split the vote and ultimately relinquished the nomination to Donald Trump.

Yet Democrats are buoyed in their 2020 hopes after a blue wave swept the Democrats into the majority in the House of Representatives after they flipped several Republican-held seats in suburban areas and possibly 40 seats overall when all the votes are tallied.

Democrats largely focused on policies such as health care and for the most part avoided conversations about President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump reversed course on flavored e-cigarette ban over fear of job losses: report Trump to award National Medal of Arts to actor Jon Voight Sondland notified Trump officials of investigation push ahead of Ukraine call: report MORE, particularly if he should be impeached.

“…we had a successful formula in 2018 which was to run on policy (mostly healthcare) and against corruption. We should do that again,” Schatz said.

Trump has expressed optimism for his reelection chances in 2016, saying he does not see a Democrat on the horizon who can defeat him as he doubles down on the support from his white, rural base.

They got some real beauties going,” he said at a campaign rally in October. 

However, it is not outside the realm of possibility that Trump could face either a Republican primary opponent or a traditional Republican who runs as an Independent. Outgoing Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeLindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight Kelly, McSally virtually tied in Arizona Senate race: poll The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Nareit — White House cheers Republicans for storming impeachment hearing MORE (R-Ariz.) and Gov. John Kasich (R-Ohio) have both not ruled out presidential runs of their own.