Are These Ghosts of Presidential Elections Past Going to Run in 2020?

You certainly didn't ask to see these three again on a presidential debate stage.


|||Danny Raustadt/Dreamstime.com
Danny Raustadt/Dreamstime.com

Those hoping to get a break from politics after Tuesday's midterm elections are completely out of luck. The 2020 presidential candidates are already here. While there are many Democratic senators, representatives, and governors who will potentially challenge President Trump in two years, several ghosts from presidential elections past are already teetering towards the White House.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) previously threw his hat in the crowded 2016 Republican presidential primary. While terrible on things like privacy, drug prohibition, and foreign policy, Kasich slowly became a favorite among Democrats for being not that kind of Republican. The moderate Kasich didn't let his national election loss go to waste. Kasich has since made several appearances on talk shows to opine about the current state of politics, particularly bemoaning the rise of Trump Republicans. If it seemed like Kasich was setting himself up for another slog, he confirmed as much during a Monday appearance on The View, where he said another run was on the table.

Former Vice President Joe Biden has also left room for speculation about his intentions. Biden announced in 2015 that he would not seek the presidency in the 2016 election, and instead took some personal time out of the spotlight following the tragic death of his son, Beau. Just a year later, Biden expressed regret over not throwing his hat in the ring. He spent the weeks leading up to the 2018 midterms stumping for Democratic candidates and after casting his vote on Tuesday, Biden told MSNBC reporters that he would make a formal decision about a presidential bid in early 2019.

To no one's surprise, Hillary Clinton also appears to be making her case for a future run. The former first lady and secretary of state has dreamt of being the next President of the United States for years. She came the closest to her goal in the 2016 election after beating Sen. Bernie Sanders (I—Vt.) in the Democratic primary. Despite her best efforts, however, she lost (again). Though Clinton avoided the media for a bit, she came back with a vengeance to blame everything and everyone except herself for her loss. Responding to some of the election frustrations shared in her book, What Happened, several Democrats have criticized Clinton's inability to accept at least partial blame for her failed campaign. In fact, Clinton's constant musings have given Republicans room to accuse her of spending too much time reliving 2016. Even the late John McCain, who similarly lost an election to former President Barack Obama, could not convince Clinton to drop her sentiments.

Effectively shutting everyone else out, Clinton not only continues to mention the past, but has dropped a few hints about the future. In an interview with Recode's Kara Swisher a week before the midterms, Clinton said that she didn't want to run again, but that she'd "like to be president." If that wasn't enough, Clinton added a typical 'we'll see what happens after the midterms' line to her answer. But the real icing on the cake? Clinton is going on a speaking tour.

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  1. Though Clinton avoided the media for a bit, she came back with a vengeance to blame everything and everyone except herself for her loss.

    When the most qualified candidate ever loses to a complete novice, it proves there’s something wrong with the system. Although Clinton ran a terrific campaign, factors beyond her control conspired to keep her out of the White House.

    Most obviously, Russia hacked the election to boost Drumpf, who may have been a Kremlin asset dating back to 1987. There was also rampant media bias exaggerating Clinton’s supposed flaws while normalizing Drumpf. (Remember the absurd amount of coverage given to her minor fainting incident?) Moreover, as Nate Silver has shown, if the election had been held one day before the Comey letter, Clinton probably would have won. Finally, none of this would matter if we elected Presidents the sensible way ? nationwide popular vote, which Clinton won by 3 million.

    Needless to say, if Clinton runs in 2020 she instantly becomes my top choice. Harris, Gillibrand, Warren, and Booker will have to fight for the VP spot.


    1. Clinton-Gore dammit. They both had the presidency stolen from them.

  2. The only one that might be a credible candidate is Biden. Hillary and Kasich are dead in the water.

    1. Eh. I can’t think of many other Republicans poised to try to primary Trump. As far as that goes, Kasich wins by not being bland in a big field, so could do respectably well if there are any #NeverTrump conservatives left.

    2. I don’t know – Kasich seems like a fairly sane and reasonable middle-of-the-road Democrat. Maybe if the Democrats shed the hard-left socialist image and move back toward the center, Kasich will have a decent enough chance of getting the nom.

      He *is* considering running as a Dem, right?

  3. Dems dump their losers – so Hillary is not a factor for a second.

    Republicans like their zombies enough to bring them back.

    1. But Hillary’s loss wasn’t her fault. You’re not a “loser” if you get cheated out of victory.

      1. You’re not a closer if you don’t win, and you can’t spell “closer” without “loser”, so you may be right.


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