On the theory that it’s never too early to launch the next campaign, the new USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll has identified an overwhelming front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020.
It’s someone entirely new.
Literally. Not an identifiable person. Just “someone entirely new.” When that description was included on a list of possible contenders, 66% of Democrats and independents said they would be “excited” to see such a person jump in the race; just 9% thought he or she shouldn’t run. That’s an overwhelming yes-please-run score of 57 percentage points for, you know, whomever.
Compare that to the downbeat sentiment toward the party’s 2016 nominee, former secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Even though she won the popular vote — to be sure, Republican Donald Trump on Monday carried the count that mattered, in the Electoral College — just 23% were excited about the prospect of her running again; 62% said they would prefer she not. That’s a please-don’t-run score of 39 points.
The nationwide poll of 626 registered voters who identified themselves as Democrats or independents, taken Wednesday through Sunday, has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.9 points.