Howard Dean: Older Dems need 'to get the hell out of the way' in 2020

Howard Dean says older members of the Democratic Party need "to get the hell out of the way and have somebody who is 50 running the country."

"I don't think [Sen. Bernie SandersBernie Sanders2020 Democrats join striking McDonald's workers Billionaire's M gift to Morehouse grads points way to student debt solution Poll: Nearly half of Clinton's former supporters back Biden MORE] is going to be the next nominee. But he could be. But I'm very much for somebody who is younger," said Dean, a former Democratic National Committee chairman and MSNBC contributor on "Morning Joe" Thursday.

"Morning Joe" guest co-host Willie Geist noted that meant big party names such as former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenThe Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan Castro swears off donations from oil, gas, coal executives Meghan McCain on Pelosi-Trump feud: 'Put this crap aside' and 'work together for America' MORE, who has hinted at running, as well as Sanders, who has strong grassroots support from the party's left after his run against Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonFrustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' Poll: Nearly half of Clinton's former supporters back Biden Harris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign MORE, would be out. Biden is 75 and Sanders is 76.

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"I think my generation needs to get the hell out of politics. Start coaching and start moving up this next generation who are more ... fiscally sane," Dean continued. "Neither Republicans or Democrats can claim they are fiscally responsible anymore.

“This young generation is going to pay for that if we don’t get the hell out of the way and have somebody who is 50 running the country.”

He also highlighted some potential younger contenders.

"I'm going to support someone who is young and in the next generation," said Dean, naming Sens. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyFrustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' Overnight Defense: Details on Senate's 0B defense bill | Bill rejects Trump plan to skirt budget caps | Backfills money for border wall | Defense chief says more troops could head to Mideast Dem senator plans amendment to restrict military action against Iran MORE (D-Conn.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisCastro swears off donations from oil, gas, coal executives Harris leads California Democrats in condemning HUD immigrant housing policy Billionaire's M gift to Morehouse grads points way to student debt solution MORE (D-Calif.), and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth Gillibrand2020 Democrats join striking McDonald's workers Fox News contributor Campos-Duffy compares abortion to slavery 2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues MORE (D-N.Y.) as well as Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, the son of former L.A. district attorney Gil Garcetti, as possible contenders.

"I wouldn't be surprised if 17 people run," Dean said.

"Like the Republican primary the last time around," Geist said.

"Hopefully there won't be people in it for the fun of it," Dean added.

"And end up winning it anyway," joked panelist Sam Stein, in a shot at President TrumpDonald John TrumpNASA exec leading moon mission quits weeks after appointment The Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan Frustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' MORE.

Dean also said he thinks "progressives are in the process of informally taking over the Democratic party" and that "the country has moved to the left."

Dean, 69, led the field at one point during the 2004 Democratic presidential primary.

His comments come as cable news programs have run segments previewing the upcoming midterm elections and also the 2020 presidential race.