Polling 'shows there's not a huge market for Howard Schultz': 538's Nate Silver

George Stephanopoulos talks to FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver about the latest developments on the 2020 race, including the possibility former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz runs as an independent.
4:57 | 02/03/19

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Transcript for Polling 'shows there's not a huge market for Howard Schultz': 538's Nate Silver
Now your entry into the race pretty much guarantees that a Republican is going to win. Joy, I don't agree with you. If he runs against a far left, Progressive person who is suggesting 60%, 70% tax increases on the rich and a health care system that we can't pay for, president trump is going to get re-elected. Joy Behar there with Howard Schultz, that guy when made Starbucks famous. Now thinking about running as an independent for president in 2020. You heard joy channel love Democrats there who are convinced he's going to hand the election to Donald Trump. Nate silver is here, and you have kind of a counterintuitive. You don't think that's necessarily so. It's not clear how much of an impact he'll have at all. There is not a huge market for Howard Schultz, but if you go back and look in 2016 how socially liberal but fiscally conservative voters voted, about a majority -- not a large majority, but about 15% voted for trump, 40% for Clinton and 8% for third party candidates. He's to the right of trump who ran as a centrist himself. There are a lot of ways to size up the field and third party candidates don't normally take off, so this could be premature, but I think if you are running in the center, you're going to probably peel off voters about equally from both parties. That's what Ross Perot did. I was going to ask you about that. A lot of supporters of the former president bush, they say that Ross Perot cost him the election. That's not exactly true. If you look, it's pretty much down the middle right? About 40% of the voters said they would have voted for Clinton, 40% for bush and some not at all. The same for Gary Johnson who is also in that way, he drew as many votes from Clinton and trump in 2016. What that doesn't take into account is Ross Perot back in 1992 was really targeting president bush and it appears that Howard Schultz is really targeting Democrats. That impacts the campaign. And people would say he softened up the approval rating and that's why bush was so unpopular by the time he got to summer. This is a one limited perspective to have on it, but I think the Democrats are having an emotional reaction thinking, now we have trump on the ropes. We had a good midterm, and trump did not do well in the shutdown, and we don't want anything to screw it up, right? That's different than we might have had with a stronger, popular president. Let's introduce a wild card, sure. And we can beat him. Democrats are presuming maybe presumptuously they can beat trump on their own. They don't want anything else to come in and interfere with that. You have come up with a way to think about the democratic primary race. You think about the five lanes. Explain what you mean by that. Go through the list. If you go through and look at roughly -- divide it into fifths, you have this. Party loyalists which are more moderate and establishment voters. You have the left. You have millennials who voted differently from older voters in 2016. You have black voters and you have hispanic voters and it's not so much about picking one lane as who can actually appeal to at least three of those and gain the majority? It's kind of like a Venn diagram. They're overlapping and you can be a millennial and black for example. So to me, someone like kamala Harris for example who checks a lot of those boxes potentially and will be criticized for not being left enough, and by some for being too liberal, but at the same time, she has done very well in California with a multiethnic coalition. She is pretty good on social media, has a fair amount of appeal to younger voters. Someone like her or like maybe Cory booker who declared early this week obviously might have more of a broader appeal than someone like a Bernie Sanders who is going to perform very, very well with the left and maybe very well as we did in 2016 with millennials, but beyond that, maybe not much room to grow. What about Joe Biden? He's holding from the previous regime if you will. He would be going for what is basically Hillary Clinton's coalition. So what we call party loyalist, being establishment voters and hoping to do very well with black voters and hispanic voters. That's how Clinton won in 2016. She did pretty well in the primary, you know, trying to replicate that. I'm not sure. There are so many different brands, sub brands of candidates right now where voters can be a lot pickier than they were. We have the exact type of field. You might have 15 or even 20 candidates potentially, but Biden, there are branches on the tree and there are a with Biden and without Biden story.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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