Joy Behar says his entry as an independent would guarantee a Trump win, while Whoopi Goldberg says he and the president are basically the same in one significant way.
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz hasn't even thrown his hat into the ring and he's already getting a pretty good drubbing by the women of "The View." They don't take issue with him as an individual or a business leader, but rather with his idea of running as an independent candidate, and they weren't shy in telling him this to his face.
Schultz took his lumps with grace and countered their arguments with his own conviction, but it didn't look like he changed their minds any more than they changed his. Nevertheless, everyone was willing to have the conversation and only one panel member got a little indignant over one hot-button topic.
While the ideologies and politics of "The View" cover the range from liberal to conservative, they have been able to agree on their distaste for President Trump, thus their concerns about Schultz running outside of the current two-party system.
"The main thing that scares me is that your entry into this race will guarantee Trump another four years and we cannot have that," Joy Behar told him in response to Schultz' criticism of both parties and government's lost ability to compromise.
"You talk about the Democrats not wanting to negotiate, they cannot negotiate with a toddler," Behar continued. "If you give him the cookie one day, the next day he wants another cookie. So it's not equal on both sides. They had to play tough, the Democrats, with him, otherwise he will run amok."
But Schultz sees things differently, of course, or he wouldn't be considering an independent run. "If President Trump runs against a far-left progressive liberal Democrat who is suggesting 60-70 percent tax increases on the rich and a healthcare system that we can't pay for, President Trump is going to get reelected," he countered.
And according to Schultz, that's the kind of liberal politics Democrats like Sen. Kamala Harris are representing. "What we have is extremes on both sides who don't represent the majority of Americans who don't have a voice," he said. "And what I'm saying is, 'Let's give the American people a choice.'"
He believes that he can offer a compelling enough argument from an independent platform to lure in people from both sides of the aisle who've grown disenchanted with Republicans and Democrats. He suggested he could offer those people a "home."
But as soon as he said he was pro-choice, Meghan McCain said that he'd lost her, and she suspected many conservatives would refuse to support him over that issue as well.
According to Schultz, though, that is exactly the problem in America today. Disagreements over those issues should not divide us at a time where the nation is facing a much bigger crisis, as he sees it.
"What we have is a void of leadership, a void of trust, no dignity, no honor, no respect in the Oval Office and in government today," Schultz said of the Trump administration. "[Not] Having government experience, I think, is not a disqualifier. I think what the qualifier is, can you bring the country together, can you lead people, and I think, can we restore a sense of values and compassion and empathy back into the American spirit and our standing in the world."
And the reason that Schultz thinks he's the right man for the job is because of what he's accomplished with Starbucks over the past four decades, and what he's done for his employees there. "I gave my company comprehensive health insurance, equity in the form of stock options, free college tuition for every employee," he said.
"But you can't do that with a country," Whoopi Goldberg shot back. When he tried to argue, she pointed out that running a company is very different from running the United States.
"This is the same problem you-know-who has," she said. "When you own your company you can make these changes as you want them to be. When you have to report to the Senate and the Congress and all the 50 million people that come in the middle, that's a little bit different."
She challenged him to stand by his convictions as a lifelong Democrat and should he choose to run, do so under his own party. "And then change the party if you feel like that as opposed to going elsewhere," she said.
Sunny Hostin suggested he consider a slower political approach, rather than jumping straight into the battle for the presidency. But while Schultz has not officially declared anything, he was certainly speaking as someone who's pretty sure he's going to run and pretty sure how he intends to do it.
And his platform definitely seems to be a focus on the dignity of the office and its lack thereof under the current president, as well as the overall dysfunction of both parties, which he sees as something that simply can't wait for him to take the slow political path.
You can check out the rest of his interview in the video below.
The most successful third-party or independent candidate of the modern era has to be Ross Perot who garnered more than 18 percent of the popular vote in 1992, but still scored no electoral votes. The first time a third-party or independent candidate pulled that off was in 2016 as part of the faithless electors protest.
Prior to Perot you have to go back to 1968 when George Wallace became the most recent third-party or independent candidate to actually win a state, scoring 13 percent of the popular vote and 46 electoral votes, still far short of the 270 needed to win the presidency.
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