New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio could announce his candidacy for the 2020 Democratic nomination for president as early as next week, reports the New York Daily News.
The outlet, which cites four sources “with knowledge of [de Blasio’s] plans,” notes that the mayor has been laying the foundation for a presidential run over the last several months.
In late-February, de Blasio paid a visit to the state of Iowa, which will hold the very first Democratic primary on February 3, 2020. Fewer than 100 people showed up to his events in Sioux City and Des Moines.
During his speech in Sioux City, de Blasio stated:
If you look at the everyday discourse, you might think this is a country mired in division and that conservative forces are dominant. I think it’s quite the opposite. … I think this is a country waiting to be unified.
In March, de Blasio visited South Carolina, another early primary state.
During the trip, he spoke about his alleged qualifications. “Not a single thing I’m telling you is a theory,” the mayor said, having touted his progressive bona fides. “Not a single thing is a policy paper waiting for some day a vote in Congress. These are things we’re doing in New York.”
Also in March, de Blasio traveled to New Hampshire, which will hold its primary a week after Iowa, and presided over a panel discussion about mental health. Unfortunately for the mayor, just 20 people showed up, 14 of whom participated on the panel, according to the New York Post.
Despite his pre-presidential trek through early primary states and his apparent enthusiasm for campaigning, Mayor de Blasio will have an uphill battle in the Democratic primaries. Notwithstanding the multiple ethics investigations from which he’s escaped blame, de Blasio is entering a field with 22 other contenders, almost all of whom are more popular than he.
According to the RealClearPolitics polling average (which doesn’t include de Blasio), former Vice President Joe Biden currently leads the pack of Democratic candidates with 36.8%, followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) with 16.4%. The rest of the candidates stand far below, with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) at 8%, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) at 7.4%, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 7%, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke at 4.6%, Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) at 2.4%, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) at 1.6%, and businessman Andrew Yang at 0.8%.
In a Monmouth University poll conducted between March 1-4 assessing the favorability ratings of multiple announced and unannounced Democratic presidential candidates, de Blasio was the only politician with a below zero rating.
In the same survey, when voters were asked who they would support in the 2020 election, de Blasio tied for ninth, with just one percent.
A Quinnipiac University poll conducted in late-March and early-April asked New Yorkers if Mayor de Blasio should run for president. 76% said “No.” Even 73% of New York Democrats don’t want him to run, according to the poll.
In a race that has yet to really begin, Bill de Blasio’s standing as a viable candidate may appear rather bleak. However, until the debates begin, and voters watch the competition unfold, it’s impossible to predict with any certainty what will occur.
As Foo Fighters singer-songwriter Dave Grohl wrote: “Dear loneliness, you forgot, but I remember this. Oh, stranger things have happened. Stranger things have happened, I know.”