5 hard questions Democrats need to answer before-2020

Earlier today, we -- me and forecaster extraordinaire Harry Enten -- put out our first rankings of the 2020 field. (F...

Posted: Jul 20, 2018 9:07 AM
Updated: Jul 20, 2018 9:07 AM

Earlier today, we -- me and forecaster extraordinaire Harry Enten -- put out our first rankings of the 2020 field. (For more details on who ranks where, read our full write here.)

The process of ranking the 10 people most likely to be the Democratic nominee against President Donald Trump in two years' time got me to thinking about the unanswered questions kicking around within the party -- questions that won't get resolved until the 2020 primary fight (and might not get resolved even then.)

Here are a few to consider:

1. Do Democrats want to nominate their own version of Trump? Or the opposite?

If the former, outsider candidates like Mark Cuban or Howard Schultz are more intriguing. If the latter, then an institutionalist (Joe Biden is at the front of that pack) might hold some allure. Or maybe a woman (Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, Kamala Harris) to shine a bright light on the incumbent's past statements and behavior.

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2.- Is there a "too liberal" candidate in the field?

At the moment, the way to win in the Democratic Party is to get as far to the left as possible. It's why you've seen several likely 2020ers get beyond Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's pledge to abolish the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE). The question is whether that produces a candidate who might not be the party's best chance of beating Trump.

3. A senator? Really?

The top of the Democratic field is absolutely lousy with senators -- and former senators, like Biden. But only two presidents since 1960 have been elected straight from the Senate: John F. Kennedy and Barack Obama. And the 2020 field doesn't look to have someone with that natural political ability just yet.

4. Trade wars

In the 2008 primary fight between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, one of the main points of disagreement was their views on trade. Obama bashed Clinton on her past support for NAFTA while she sought to distance herself from it. Where is the party now on trade -- particularly with Trump's oft-stated suspicion about international trade agreements and the fact that he is president now because of three Midwestern states where free trade has hurt the economy.

5. Fresh faces or trusted hands?

The three candidates polling best right now in hypothetical Democratic primary surveys are Biden (age 75), Bernie Sanders (76) and Elizabeth Warren (69). Is that the right contrast with the 72-year-old Trump? Or would Democrats be better off skewing younger and more in line with their party's base? If so, keep an eye on New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker (49) or Gillibrand (51).

The Point:-Because Trump is Trump, he sucks up all the oxygen in every room. Which means that the story about the issues still facing the Democratic Party get glossed over. They shouldn't -- they are real and will need to be addressed in order for the party to make Trump a one-term President.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 453808

Reported Deaths: 6131
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin941381495
Ramsey40509748
Dakota33463350
Anoka31283368
Washington20471234
Stearns18051190
St. Louis13916247
Scott1213098
Wright11756107
Olmsted1073975
Sherburne827868
Carver703139
Clay657684
Rice621170
Kandiyohi556772
Blue Earth546833
Crow Wing489178
Otter Tail463167
Chisago458138
Benton423288
Winona394248
Douglas378466
Nobles374447
Mower372129
Goodhue355362
Polk330660
McLeod327947
Beltrami315048
Morrison314145
Lyon304738
Becker288839
Itasca287143
Isanti284842
Carlton283543
Steele278510
Pine269614
Freeborn253623
Todd233130
Nicollet227938
Brown217434
Mille Lacs215045
Le Sueur213516
Cass210524
Meeker201233
Waseca192816
Wabasha17413
Martin171726
Roseau166317
Hubbard150238
Redwood141027
Houston139814
Dodge13864
Renville138040
Chippewa132332
Cottonwood128918
Fillmore12646
Wadena120218
Rock111912
Aitkin111233
Sibley10947
Faribault108816
Watonwan10688
Pennington101016
Kanabec99318
Pipestone96423
Yellow Medicine94916
Murray9096
Jackson87310
Swift84418
Pope7465
Stevens7078
Marshall70315
Clearwater68714
Lake66315
Lac qui Parle66016
Wilkin6349
Koochiching60310
Lincoln4892
Big Stone4693
Unassigned44568
Grant4388
Norman4258
Mahnomen4147
Kittson37320
Red Lake3204
Traverse2613
Lake of the Woods1961
Cook1150

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Cases: 310915

Reported Deaths: 4432
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk46760465
Linn18037279
Scott15838172
Black Hawk14076243
Woodbury13111181
Johnson1228552
Dubuque11615159
Pottawattamie9146115
Dallas907772
Story879438
Cerro Gordo472572
Webster472077
Sioux459657
Warren458039
Clinton457768
Marshall430762
Buena Vista396230
Muscatine395878
Des Moines394943
Plymouth352870
Wapello349898
Jasper331659
Lee324132
Marion308953
Jones274650
Henry267331
Carroll258234
Bremer249848
Crawford234324
Washington222933
Boone222717
Benton213050
Mahaska197637
Jackson194932
Tama190159
Dickinson188329
Kossuth178544
Delaware176036
Clay172021
Wright166624
Fayette165924
Hamilton162230
Buchanan162024
Winneshiek160820
Harrison158162
Hardin156931
Cedar155519
Clayton153849
Butler150924
Page146415
Floyd141436
Cherokee140027
Mills138517
Lyon137533
Poweshiek134924
Hancock131524
Allamakee130930
Iowa127722
Madison123610
Calhoun12349
Grundy122528
Jefferson122125
Winnebago121729
Mitchell116837
Louisa116230
Cass114843
Chickasaw113712
Appanoose112440
Sac112015
Emmet111232
Union111023
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Shelby105427
Guthrie104224
Franklin103318
Unassigned10110
Palo Alto91711
Montgomery88324
Keokuk86326
Howard85519
Monroe82220
Clarke8108
Pocahontas78111
Ida75930
Davis70121
Greene6977
Adair69620
Monona67018
Lucas66610
Osceola64711
Worth6184
Taylor5999
Fremont5246
Van Buren50215
Decatur4964
Ringgold44811
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