In an interview with The Hill published on Thursday, Republican strategist Ford O’Connell made a series of predictions pertaining to the 2020 Democratic primary.
“I’m sure I’m going to take heat for this several months for now,” O’Connell began, stating that Beto O’Rourke, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, and Joe Biden appear to be the strongest candidates. These four campaigns, the political operative suggested, will likely shape the Democratic primary.
“I think when it comes to the Democratic Primary you’re actually down to four people and that is the three B’s and Kamala Harris: Biden, Beto and Bernie,” he said.
As The Hill notes, cracks are already emerging in the crowded Democratic field of contenders. In a recent interview, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar took a swing at O’Rourke.
“I wasn’t born to run for office, but I am running,” she said, alluding to the Texas Democrats Vanity Fair profile in which he is quoted saying that he is “just born to be” president.
But according to Ford O’Connell, the real battle is between Beto O’Rourke and Bernie Sanders.
“Clearly Bernie sees Beto as a true threat, they seem to be fighting over the same turf based on how I’m watching the opposition research within the Democratic Party,” he said.
O’Rourke and Sanders do not have a lot in common, however. A self described democratic socialist, Bernie Sanders has a long record of advocating — and voting — for progressive policies. The Texas Democrat’s voting record is centrist and, compared to other 2020 Democrats, quite conservative.
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, O’Rourke has not embraced socialized healthcare, nor has he come out in support of free college. Analyses of his voting record have revealed that he frequently votes like a Republican, for bills boosting Trump’s immigration policies and the fossil fuel industry.
The architects of his campaign insist he’s not interested in adhering to a particular ideological lane, and Beto O’Rourke himself shuns party labels. https://t.co/yfO0VEqhra
— Chicago Sun-Times (@Suntimes) March 21, 2019
Donors are infatuated with O’Rourke, however, and it has been rumored that at least two top Obama fundraisers are likely to back the Texas Democrat in 2020. The midterm star has grassroots support as well, as evident in the fact that he has managed to raise more than $6 million in the first 24 hours after officially launching his campaign.
But according to Republican strategist Ford O’Connell, although it would be a mistake to write O’Rourke off, he is not likely to be the nominee. Beto will, in fact, likely end up being the running mate of the nominee: Biden, Sanders, or Harris.
“I see Beto going off most likely being the VP nominee when you start looking at the age difference,” he said.