Sherrod Brown: Dems will lose if 'we have to choose' between speaking to progressive base and workers

Sherrod Brown: Dems will lose if 'we have to choose' between speaking to progressive base and workers
© Getty Images

Ohio Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownSunday shows — New impeachment phase dominates Brown confirms he won't enter 2020 race: 'I think it's a good field' GM officially sells Ohio plant, months after Trump touted sale MORE (D) is urging the Democratic Party's eventual 2020 presidential nominee to reach out to all Americans and build a broad coalition instead of choosing to either speak to workers or progressives. 

In an interview with MSNBC's "Morning Joe," Brown warned that such a choice between working-class voters and progressive activists was a trap that spelled defeat for the party.

ADVERTISEMENT

"No matter who the presidential nominee is, it ... should be somebody whose centerpiece of the campaign is dignity of work," Brown said, riffing off of his "Dignity of Work" tour, which has brought the senator to several key primary states.

"I've seen so many national Democrats look at this as you either speak to the progressive base, or you speak to workers, working-class voters of all races. And if we have to choose between the two, we lose," he added to MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski.

"To win Ohio, to win the industrial Midwest, the heartland, and the Electoral College you've got to speak to the progressive base, to be sure, as I have my whole career, but you've got to talk to workers and live where they live."

Brown added that he is thinking "very seriously" of running in 2020, echoing his previous comments.

In an interview with The New York Times last year, Brown said that he and his wife "have been overwhelmed by the number of people that have come forward and said, ‘You’ve got to run. You have the right message. You come from the right state.’ ”

Brown won reelection in November by 7 points in a state President TrumpDonald John TrumpGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial Warren goes local in race to build 2020 movement 2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes MORE won by 8 points over Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham Clinton2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes The Memo: Democrats confront prospect of long primary Manafort sought to hurt Clinton 2016 campaign efforts in key states: NYT MORE (D) in 2016.

If he decides to run, the 66-year-old would join a crowded Democratic field that includes several of his colleagues in the Senate. Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisWarren goes local in race to build 2020 movement 2020 Dems put focus on stemming veteran suicides The Memo: Democrats confront prospect of long primary MORE (D-Calif.) announced her candidacy earlier this week and Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren goes local in race to build 2020 movement 2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes 2020 Dems put focus on stemming veteran suicides MORE (D-Mass.) and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandCharlize Theron: We didn't want the politics to overshadow 'Bombshell' Senate panel clears controversial Trump court pick Advocates step up efforts for horse racing reform bill after more deaths MORE (D-N.Y.) have formed presidential exploratory committees.