Democratic Senator Ben Cardin of Maryland gave an interview to the Baltimore Sun this week and was asked how he thought the 2020 presidential race was shaping up. His answer sounded like some combination of defeatism and realism. He may be willing to help keep the fight going, but he still thinks Donald Trump is the favorite to win, despite being a liar, a cheat and a bully. Somebody needs to learn to turn that frown upside down, Senator.
U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin of Maryland said Monday that he believes Democrats face “an uphill battle” in the 2020 presidential election and — at least for now — “I think Donald Trump is the favorite.”
“I came to that conclusion a couple months ago,” the third-term Democrat said. “Before that, I thought America would not tolerate a person who lies, cheats, is a bully. That’s against our values. I didn’t think he had any chance at reelection.” …
“When you see the support base that he has and recognize that the electoral map is not the popular map, I think it’s an uphill battle,” the senator said during an interview with The Baltimore Sun’s editorial board.
Cardin doesn’t have much to worry about personally. He’s not up for election again until 2024, assuming he wants another term. If so, he’s in a very safe seat. He fended off a primary challenge from Chelsea Manning handily two years ago and won another term with more than 65% of the vote. The only way he’d have any concerns would be if Larry Hogan decided to run against him and that seems unlikely.
Anyway, even if Cardin thinks Trump is going to win, who does he think could do the best against him? He hasn’t given an official endorsement yet, but during the interview, he speaks very highly of Michael Bloomberg. Of course, he admits he’s a bit biased in that regard because Bloomberg has invested so heavily in Baltimore. Maryland’s primary isn’t until the end of April and for all I know, Bloomberg might be one of the frontrunners by then. I’m sure he’d appreciate Cardin’s support.
Of course, Cardin isn’t the only one sending up red flags. Recently, Nate Silver told a reporter from the Atlantic that nobody seems to have learned anything from the 2016 election and Trump would likely win a second term. And you probably already heard that Michael Moore predicted a Trump victory last month.
Personally, I think it’s way too soon to say, particularly when we have no idea yet who Trump will be facing. The unwavering enthusiasm of his supporters (which showed up in New Hampshire last night) combined with a strong economy probably makes the President a likely choice as the victor. But Donald Trump is also unlike any president in the history of our country. He enjoys breaking the rules on such a regular basis that we might as well throw out the conventional political playbooks.
At least for the moment, however, President Trump is doing well enough to throw many of his political opponents into a funk. And Ben Cardin is only one of many examples.