2020 Democratic Presidential Prospects: Year End 2018 Report

— Political Snapshots and Midterm Activity
Final Draft Updated Jan. 2, 2019

comments, suggestions, additions on background to action08 @ gmail
See also: Making the Rounds 2017-18 | Websites

Conventional wisdom is that there will be a very large field on the Democratic side, but at year's end there are just three nationally known candidates and three exploratory candidates.  On the Republican side, the working assumption is that President Trump will be the 2020 nominee, but it is quite plausible given all the investigations going on that he will not even be a candidate, in which case there could be a scramble on the GOP side as well.  For now, however, the focus is on the Democrats. 

Declared Candidates:

July 28, 2017 - U.S. Rep. John K. Delaney
Feb. 2, 2018 - Entrepreneur Andrew Yang [filed Nov. 6, 2017]
Nov. 12, 2018 - State Sen. Richard Ojeda
Explororatory Candidates:
Nov. 15, 2018 - Lecturer, author activist Marianne Williamson
Dec. 12, 2018 - Former San Antonio Mayor and HUD Secretary Julián Castro
Dec. 31, 2018 - U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren

Former Vice President Joe Biden — American Possibilities PAC
A major focus for former Vice President Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden since leaving office has been their work at the Biden Foundation, which seeks to "build upon Vice President and Dr. Biden’s lifelong commitment to protect and advance the rights and opportunities of all people through educational programming and public policy analysis."  In late 2017 and early 2018 Biden promoted his book, Promise Me Dad, with a multi-city tour that launched on Nov. 13 in New York City and continued into Feb. 2018.  On the political front, Biden was much in demand as a speaker at Democratic events.  On June 1, 2018 he announced American Possibilities PAC which coordinated his efforts in the midterms:

"Together, in 2018, we endorsed a slate of 133 candidates. More than half of those endorsements were women. A quarter were people of color. Almost half of those candidates were under 50 years of age. 

"Through the course of the campaign, I traveled to 24 states in support of 65 of our candidates. In the final six days before November 7, I visited 13 different cities — helping to turn out the vote. And thanks to supporters everywhere, we were able to make a direct investment in these races. Altogether, we contributed more than $600,000 to candidates this cycle."

PAC Executive Director:  Greg Schultz
(started as senior advisor to Vice President Biden in Dec. 2013)  Ohio state director on Obama's 2012 re-election campaign.  Chairman of Franklin County Democrats to mid-2012.  State director of Organizing for America from mid-March 2009.  Deputy political director on the Ohio Campaign for Change in Fall 2008.  Legislative liaison for Gov. Ted Strickland in the Department of Administrative Services.  First vice president of Ohio Young Democrats.  B.A. in history and political science (2003) and M.Ed (2004) from The Ohio State University.  twitter
Research:  Sharmeen Khan  Finance:  Carla Frank

Biden Foundation  |  Biden Institute at Univ. of Delaware SPPA  || American Possibilities PAC:  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  P2008

Independence USA PAC

Former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg — Independence USA PAC
From Bloomberg LP, the global information and technology company he founded in 1981, which has 19,000 employees, to Bloomberg Philanthropies, which announced on Nov. 19 it would be donating $1.8 billion to Johns Hopkins to be "used for financial aid for qualified low- and middle-income students" Mike Bloomberg is having an impact.  Whether he wants to take on the complications of presidential campaign remains to be seen.  He did enjoy success in his three terms as Mayor (elected in 2001, 2005, and 2009.  In 2016 Bloomberg considered an independent run for president, but he ruled it out on March (+).  Now he is firmly aligned with the Democratic Party.  He provided a total of $110 million to support Democrats in the 2018 cycle, much through his Independence USA PAC, and emphasized taking back the U.S. House (1, 2).  Bloomberg doesn't fit the picture of a traditional Democrat.  He has been described as a "pragmatic centrist," and if he runs he would likely have difficully attracting support of the progressive activists who are a critical part of the party.  Still, Bloomberg has led on several issues important to Democrats, specifically gun violence and climate change.  Bloomberg was a co-founder of Mayors Against Illegal Guns in 2006 and has provided much of the backing for Everytown for Gun Safety.  He teamed with former Sierra Club chairman Carl Pope to author Climate of Hope (St. Martin's Press, April 2017).  Bloomberg has a revised and updated edition of his biography, Bloomberg on Bloomberg (Wiley & Sons), coming out in Jan. 2019.

PAC Treasurer: Howard Wolfson

mikebloomberg.com  ||  Independence USA PAC:  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

Purpose PAC

U.S. Sen. Cory Booker — Cory Booker for Senate / Purpose PAC (CoryPAC)
Sen. Cory Booker was very active in travel for Democratic events and candidates in the 2018 midterms (+) and is seen as almost certain to run for president in 2020.  He is also up for re-election in 2020.  On Nov. 1, 2018 New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed a law clarifying that Booker can run for both president and Senate simultaneously.  Booker may not have helped his cause with a number of overly dramatic pronouncements such as his Spartacus moment during the Kavanaugh hearing.

Senate COS:  Matt Klapper

Top Political Advisor:  Modia "Mo" Butler
Partner at Mercury from June 2018; joined the firm in 2016.  New Jersey state director to Sen. Booker.  Chief of staff to Booker while he was Mayor of Newark.  Commissioner of the Newark Housing Authority from 2006.  President and earlier executive director (from May 2003) Newark Now.  Executive director of Newark Do Something, after school program, 1993-2003.  Master's degree in public policy from the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University, 1998; B.A. in political science from Franklin and Marshall College, 1995.

Finance Director:  Lauren Dikis

-Brendan Gill [Booker campaign manager in 2014; now pres./CEO at BGill Group]
-Addisu Demissie [Booker campaign manager in 2013 special election; now principal at 50+1 Strategies and most recently managed Gavin Newsom's campaign for governor of California]

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Cory Booker for Senate (2020 re-elect):  FEC | Open Secrets  / Purpose PAC (Leadership PAC):  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  America Rising

Ruby Cramer and Darren Sands.  "Cory Booker Is Building A 2020 Campaign That’s Just Like Him: Vegan, Hyperactive, And Unapologetically Unconventional."  Buzzfeed News, Dec. 22, 2018.
Jonathan Van Meter.  "Can I Get a Hug?"  New York, Sept. 19, 2018.

America Works

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown — Friends of Sherrod Brown / America Works
Sen. Sherrod Brown focused on his 2018 re-election campaign; in a competitive race he ultimately defeated U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci (R) by 53.2% to 46.8%.  From 2013-18 Brown's campaign raised $28.6 million and spent $27.3 million, finishing with cash on hand of $1.8 million.  The election over, his thoughts turned to bigger things; in a Nov. 21 post on his campaign website, Brown wrote, "Our victory showed what happens when you fight for the people who make this country work — and that is a blueprint for how Democrats can win in 2020. Over the coming weeks and months, Connie and I will be discussing with family and friends whether I should run for President."

Senate COS: Sarah Benzing

Campaign Manager, Friends of Sherrod Brown (2018 re-elect):  Justin Barasky
(Jan. 2017)   Previously communications director at Priorities USA from 2015.  Communications director (announced Nov. 21, 2014 ) and national press secretary (for the 2013-14 cycle) at the DSCC.  Communications director on Sen. Sherrod Brown's 2012 re-election campaign.  Press secretary at the Ohio Democratic Party, March -Dec. 2011.  Rapid response director on Friends for Harry Reid, Feb.-Dec. 2010.  Nevada press secretary to U.S. Sen. Harry Reid, June 2009-Feb. 2010.  Communications director at O'Neill for Congress, June-Dec. 2008.  Junior communications associate at The Raben Group, July 2006-May 2008.  Deputy finance director on Charlie Wilson for Congress, March-June 2006.  Bachelor's degree in political communication from Ohio University, 2005.

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Friends of Sherrod Brown (2018 re-elect):  FEC | Open Secrets / America Works (Leadership PAC):  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  America Rising

Gov. Steve Bullock — Big Sky Values PAC
Gov. Steve Bullock was elected to a second term in 2016.  On July 18, 2017 Bullock filed with the FEC to establish Big Sky Values PAC, a Carey committee--hybrid PAC/super PAC.  He was elected chairman of the National Governors Association in July 2018 and will serve in the position to July 2019; his chair's initiative is "Good Jobs for All Americans."

PAC Consultant/Spokesman: Matt McKenna
Co-founder (Feb. 2016) and principal at Greenbrier, a PR consulting firm in the SF Bay area.  Head of communications, North America for Uber, May 2015-Jan. 2016.  Spokesman in the Office of President Bill Clinton, 2007-15.  Communications director to Sen. Jon Tester (MT) in 2007 after serving as communications director on Tester's 2006 campaign.  Communications director at the Montana Democratic Party, 2005-06.  Communications director on Tony Knowles for U.S. Senate, 2003-4.  Deputy communications director at the DSCC, 2003.  Research director to Sen. Max Cleland (GA), 2002-03.  Aide to Jon Tester, 2001.  Research director on Brian Schweitzer for U.S. Senate, 1999-2000.  B.S. in political science from Montana State University-Bozeman, 1999.

Governor's Office  ||  Big Sky Values PAC:  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg — Hitting Home PAC
To go from mayor of a city with a population of a bit more than 102,000 to the White House would seem to be a stretch, but as 2016 showed anything is possible.  In early 2017 Buttigieg ran unsuccessfully for DNC chair (+).  He has done significant national travel [PDF] in the 2018 cycle.  Buttigieg filed with the FEC to establish Hitting Home PAC on June 22, 2017; Hitting Home is a Carey committee--hybrid PAC/super PAC.  Buttigieg announced on Dec. 7 that he will not seek a third term.  He has a book, Shortest Way Home (Liveright), coming out on Feb. 12.

Mike Schmuhl
Consultant to Mel Hall's 2018 campaign against U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R) in IN-2.  Chief of staff to Mayor Buttigieg through June 12, 2013 after managing his 2011 campaign.  Campaign manager on U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly's 2010 re-election campaign, a narrow win over state Rep. Jackie Walorski.  "Radio and television producer for The Washington Post for three years."  Journalist in Minneapolis.  Studied at the Paris Institute of Political Studies, 2013-15; undergraduate degree in history from the University of Notre Dame, 2005.  See: Nov. 17, 2011 article in The Observer.
Communications:  Lis Smith
Political Director:  Matthew Cruz

Mayor's Office  ||  Hitting Home PAC:  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

Adam Wren.  "Pete Buttigieg Has His Eye On The Prize."  Indianapolis Monthly, Dec. 16, 2018. 
Edward-Isaac Dovere.  "Buttigieg Gets Closer to a 2020 Campaign."  Politico Magazine, Mar. 27, 2018.


Former Mayor and HUD Secretary Julián Castro — Opportunity First PAC /
Julián for the Future (Exploratory Committee)
In Jan. 2018 former San Antonio Mayor and HUD Secretary Julián Castro launched Opportunity First PAC, "dedicated to supporting young, progressive leaders."   The PAC supported 96 candidates running in 2008.  Also in 2018 Castro visited Iowa twice, New Hampshire three times, and Nevada twice.  He authored a book, An Unlikely Journey (Little Brown, Oct. 16, 2018).  On Dec. 12 Castro became the first of the nationally prominent Democratic prospects to take a formal step towards launching a presidential campaign, forming an exploratory committee, Julián for the Future (+), and saying he will make an announcememt in Texas on Jan. 12 (+).

Opportunity First PAC leadership team ...they all seem to be working on the exploratory:
Executive Director:  Maya Rupert
(from Aug. 2018) Senior director for policy and managing director for the D.C. office of the Center for Reproductive Rights, Feb. 2007-Aug. 2008.  Senior policy advisor (Jan 2016-Jan. 2017) and chief of staff for the Office of General Counsel (June-Dec. 2015) at HUD.  Policy director at the National Center for Lesbian Rights, May 2010-May 2015.  Associate at Sidley Austin LLP, 2007-10.  Judicial clerk at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, Sept. 2006-Aug. 2007.  J.D. from UC Berkeley School of Law, 2006; B.A. in political science, philosophy from UC Santa Barbara, 2003.  twitter

Finance Director:  Jeremy Gold
President of The Gold Standard, LLC, consulting firm in DC and Texas, from Dec. 2008.  Has served as finance director to Sen. Bill Nelson, Joe Manchin and Tom Harkin.  Deputy finance director on Erskine Bowles for Senate, 2004.  Transfer pricing consultant for PwC, 1999-2004.  B.B.A. from University of Texas at Austin, 1998.  San Antonio native.

Senior Advisor for Communications and Digital:  Jennifer Fiore
Served as Castro's Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs (Aug. 2016-Jan. 2017) and director of strategic communications (Sept. 2015-Aug. 2016) at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.  Vice president for digital strategy at West End Strategy Team, Nov. 2014-Sept. 2015.  Executive director of Campaign to Unload, Oct. 2013-Sept. 2015.  VP for public affairs at Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Jan.-Sept. 2013.  Advisor and editorial director at BlastRoots, Inc., Nov. 2011-Feb. 2013.  On hiatus, Mom.  Director of content and operations forr AOL Latin America, Sept. 2000-Sept. 2001; senior programming manager at AOL, Sept. 1997-Sept. 2000.  M.A. in liberal studies from Georgetown University, 2005; B.A. in journalism from The Evergreen State College, 1994.  twitter

Senior Political Advisor:  Matthew Jones
Longtime Castro aide.  San Antonio native.

Assistant Treasurer, Exploratory Committee:  Christopher Koob
Consultant at Koob Consulting in San Antonio since Dec. 2014.  Senior advisor to Castro at HUD, Sept.-Nov. 2014; senior advisor to Mayor Castro, May-July 2014.  Principal at Capitol Compliance Associates, Inc. in Washington, Mar. 2011-May 2014.  Director of compliance at the DSCC, Sept. 2008-Mar. 2011.  Director of finance convention operations for the DNC, April-Sept. 2008.  Mid-Atlantic sales manager at New Media Strategies, July 2007-Mar. 2008.  COO at Securing America's Future Energy, Jan.-July 2007.  Finance chief of staff at the DSCC, Feb. 2005-Jan. 2007.  Finance chief of state on John Kerry for President, Mar. 2004-Feb. 2005.  Political chief of staff on Joe Lieberman for President, Jan. 2003-Mar. 2004; director of operations of Lieberman's ROCPAC, Aug. 2001-Jan. 2003.  National development director at the New Democrat Network, Jan.-Aug. 2001.  Deputy to the senior advisor at the DNC, Aug.-Dec. 2000.  Deputy CT finance director on Lieberman for Senate, June 1999-Aug. 2000.  Studied at University of Connecticut.

Opportunity First PAC:  FEC  | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  America Rising

Andy Kroll.  "Julián Castro Gives His Clearest Signal Yet He’s Running in 2020."  Rolling Stone, Oct. 16, 2018.


Soon to be former U.S. Rep. John K. Delaney — Friends of John Delaney
The first Democrat to enter the race, U.S. Rep. John Delaney announced his candidacy on July 28, 2017.  In a Facebook Live Delaney, an entrepreneur, said he had sought to "use my experience as a business leader to come up with new bipartisan ideas to improve the economy and create jobs."  He declared, "In truth the real enemy of progress is hyperpartisan politics that tries to convince the American people that half the country is entirely wrong about what they believe, and prioritizes political victories over the common good of our citizens."  And he called for a "new social compact (+)." 

Delaney has focused most of his efforts on Iowa and NH, but particularly on Iowa.  He ran his first ad in Iowa on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018 and has spent about $1 million on advertising in the state.  He reached the milestone of stops in all 99 Iowa counties on Aug. 12, 2018 with an event at the Pizza Hut in Carroll; all told he made 20 visits to Iowa in 2017-18, totalling 36 days.  His campaign devoted significant resources to helping Iowa candidates in the midterms.  He built out the beginnings of a field organization in Iowa, and Politico reported on Nov. 16 that he "plans to have 30 full-time staffers on the ground and up to eight offices opened by January."  Delaney has also been a frequent visitor to New Hampshire, making at least 12 visits there before Nov. 6 Election Day, although his efforts in the Granite State have been lower profile than in Iowa.  Through Sept. 30, 2018 Delaney had loaned his campaign $3.5 million while receiving contributions of $1.2 million.  (In the outgoing 115th Congress, Delaney is the sixth wealthiest member (+)).  Delaney came out with a book The Right Answer: How We Can Unify Our Divided Nation (Henry Holt) on May 29, 2018.  Also on the policy front, from Dec. 14-25 Delaney is presenting “12 (Bipartisan) Days of Christmas,” during which he is outlining "12 policy priorities, which of course have bipartisan support, that will be priorities in my White House."


Congress.gov  ||  Friends of John Delaney:  FEC  ||  C-SPAN

Elaine Godfrey.  "John Delaney is playing the long game."  The Atlantic, Dec. 10, 2018.
Kevin Robillard.  "What is John Delaney thinking?"  Politico, July 30, 2017.

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard — Tulsi for Hawai'i
First elected in 2012, the congresswoman from Hawaii was a prominent support of Sen. Bernie Sanders in 2016.  She resigned from her position as a vice chair of the DNC to support the Senator from Vermont.  Gabbard has made visits to Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada and stated on MSNBC's "Hardball" on Dec. 12, 2018 that she is "seriously considering" a run for president.  She has drawn some support on social media, but is untested in her ability to assemble a national organization.

House COS:  Kainoa Penaroz

House Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Tulsi for Hawai'i:  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN 

Alexis Levinson.  "Tulsi Gabbard Is Moving Toward An Unconventional Presidential Campaign. Her Fans See 'Bernie 2.0.'” Buzzfeed, Dec. 17, 2018.

L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti — Democratic Midterm Victory Fund
Mayor Eric Garcetti filed to establish Democratic Midterm Victory Fund, a Carey committee—hybrid PAC/super PAC—on Nov. 17, 2017.  Also in the latter part of 2017, Garcetti launched the nonprofit 501(c)(3) Accelerator for America, which "provides strategic support to the best local initiatives to strengthen people’s economic security."  This group, which held its first meeting on Nov. 7-8, 2017, has allowed him to network with political, business, labor and non-profit leaders around the country on policy issues.

Senior Political Advisor:  Rick Jacobs
(Feb. 20`7)  Jacobs is also CEO of Accelerator for America from July 2017.  He served as Executive Vice Mayor and deputy chief of staff to Mayor Garcetti, Aug. 2013-Feb. 2017.  Founder (Jan. 2003) and principal of RDJ Strategic Advisors.  Founder and chair of the national advocacy group Courage Campaign, Aug. 2005-July 2013; this grew out of the Dean campaign of which Jacobs was California chair.  Guilford Glazer and Associates, 1999-Nov. 2003.  Founder, president and CEO of  Newstar, Inc. which advised and invested in the former USSR, Apr. 1991-Aug. 1998. Vice president and assistant to the chairman (Armand Hammer) at Occidental Petroleum, Jan. 1983-Apr. 1990.  Assistant to the chairman and international director for the 1982 World's Fair in Knoxville, June 1980-Nov. 1983.  B.S.F.S. in Russian studies and comparative politics from Georgetown University, 1980.  twitter

Yusef Robb
Senior advisor to Accelerator for America.  Principal at tk/Communications from May 2015.  Director of communications to Mayor Garcetti, May 2010-May 2015; senior advisor on Garcetti's re-election. Director of communications for the American Foundation for Equal Rights, Apr. 2009-Dec. 2010.  Director of messaging and campaign strategy at Griffin|Schake, 2007-10.  Senior advisor on Gavin Newsom for Governor, 2009.  Global spokesman for Live Earth, 2007.  Deputy chief of staff/acting chief of staff to State Controller Steve Westly, 2005-07.  Communications director for Yes on Prop. 87, 2006.  Press deputy/campaign press secretary to L.A. Mayor Jim Hahn, 2003-05.  Deputy communications director/speechwriter for Gov. Gray Davis "no recall" campaign, 2003.  Deputy press secretary for the New York State Democratic Party, 2002; deputy director of policy and research on Bill Mulrow for New York State Comptroller, 2002.  Account executive at Sumner Rider & Associates, 2001.  Worked in press office in NY and CA on Gore 2000.  M.A. in politics and B.A. in journalism from New York University.  twitter

also Phil Chambers
(reported by Post and Courier on Nov. 13, 2018 +)  Senior advisor on James Smith’s campaign for governor, Aug-Nov. 2018.  Chief of staff at the South Carolina Democratic Party May 2017-Aug. 2018.  Campaign director on Trav Robertson for SCDP Chair, Feb.-April 2017.  DNC member liaison on Jaime Harrison for DNC Chair, Jan.-Feb. 2017.  Campaign manager on Fedalei for Congress (SC), Dec. 2015-Nov. 2016.   Field organizer on Bernie 2016, Nov.-Dec. 2015.  B.A. in sustainable development from Columbia University in the City of New York, 2015.  twitter

Office of the Mayor  ||  Democratic Midterm Victory Fund:  FEC  | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

Channan Tigay.  "Eric Garcetti Is the Anti-Trump, Pro-Star Wars Man We Need."  GQ, June 12, 2018.
David Siders.  "Garcetti taps Hollywood ties to fuel 2020 campaign."  Politico, May 17, 2018.

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand — Kirsten Gillibrand for Senate / Off the Sidelines PAC
Sen. Gillibrand was up for re-election in 2018 but had a non-competitive race.  She did a very modest amount of national travel during the midterms.  Her campaign attracted notice for building up a huge warchest; it finished with $10.5 million in cash on hand, which could be transferred to a presidential campaign.  However, there was not much evidence of efforts to lay the groundwork for a White House bid.  During a debate on Oct. 23, 2018 Gillibrand stated, "I will serve my six-year term," but she has subsequently backtracked on that.  With illustrator Maira Kalman Gillibrand authored a children's book, Bold and Brave: Ten Heroes Who Won Women the Right to Vote (Nov. 13, 2018) (+).

Senate COS: Jess Fassler

Campaign Manager, Gillibrand for Senate (2018 re-elect):  Greg Smiley
(April 2018)  Director of intergovernmental affairs in the office of Sen. Gillibrand, Jan. 2014-Mar. 2018.  Regional representative for Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Oct. 2011-Jan. 2014.  Development coordinator in the Office of University Relations (July 2009-Feb. 2011) and legislative aide in the Office of State Relations (July 2007-June 2009) at City University of New York.  Committee clerk in the New York State Assembly, Jan.-June 2007.  M.P.A. in urban affairs and public private partnerships and B.A. in black studies and political science from CUNY City College.

Political Director, Off the Sidelines PAC:  Erica Bordador
Also served as mid-Atlantic finance director for the campaign.

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Gillibrand for Senate (2018): FEC | Open Secrets / Off the Sidelines PAC: FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  America Rising

David Freelander.  "Kirsten Gillibrand's Moment Has Arrived."  Politico Magazine, Dec. 7, 2017.
Jonathan Van Meter.  "Senator Kirsten Gillibrand on Trump, Feminism, and Hitting Her Stride in Washington."  Vogue, Oct. 12, 2017.
Stephen Rodrick.  "The Reintroduction of Kirsten Gillibrand."  New York, June 7, 2009.

U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris — Fearless for the People PAC
Although she was only elected to the Senate in 2016, Sen. Kamala Harris is one of the Democrats' stars.  Harris formed a leadership PAC, Fearless for the People PAC, in Nov. 2016.  The website states, "By making endorsements and establishing a robust online presence, Fearless for the People PAC will support Democratic incumbents and candidates who embrace a progressive agenda."  Harris did a fair bit of travel in the 2018 cycle.  The online presence drew particular attention; an article in Politico had Harris building "an online army."  With a national profile and a book coming out,The Truths We Hold: An American Journey, (Penguin Books, Jan. 8, 2019), Harris seems poised to make a run. 

Senate COS:  Rohini Kosoglu (announced Dec. 18, 2018)

Senior Advisor, Fearless for the People PAC:  Nathan Barankin
(announced Dec. 18, 2018)  Barankin, who started working for Harris in Oct. 2011, moved over from his position as chief of staff in Harris' Senate office, where he started in Jan. 2017.  Chief Deputy Attorney General (July 2013-Jan. 2017) and chief of staff (Oct. 2011-July 2013) to Attorney General Harris.  Communications director/judiciary consultant to California Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, Dec. 2009-Oct. 2011.  Deputy Attorney General (2007-08) and communications director (1999-2006) to Attorney General Billl Lockyer.  Legislative director to Senate President Bill Lockyer, 1994-98.  J.D. from University of the Pacific-McGeorge School of Law; B.A. in political science/history from UC Davis.  twitter

A Senior Advisor-Political:  Sean Clegg
Partner at SCN Strategies from 2008.  Senior advisor and Deputy Mayor for communications an strategy to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Dec. 2005-July 2008.  A founding partner at SCN Public Relations, Dec. 1996-Nov. 2005.  Account executive at The Research Group, Inc., Feb. 1992-Nov. 1996.  Press secretary on Frank Jordan for Mayor (SF), Aug.-Nov. 1995.  Staff assistant at the U.S.Senate Judiciary Committee, 1991.  B.A. in political science from UC Berkeley, 1991.  twitter

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Fearless for the People PAC:  FEC | Open Secrets / Kamala Harris for Senate (2022):  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  America Rising

Abby Aguirre.  "Kamala Harris Is Dreaming Big."  Vogue, Mar. 19, 2018.
Jamilah King.  "The Secret to Understanding Kamala Harris."  Mother Jones, Jan./Feb. 2018.
David Siders.  "Kamala Harris builds an online army."  Politico, April 29, 2018.
Casey Tolan.  "Kamala Harrris leads potential 2020 Democratic contenders in Facebook ad spending."  The Mercury News, July 20, 2018.

Soon to be former Gov. John Hickenlooper — Giddy Up PAC
Gov. John Hickenlooper is term-limited and finishes his term on Jan. 8, 2019.  For most ot the 2018 cycle, Hickenlooper kept a low profile on the national political front, only moving to establish Giddy Up PAC, on Sept. 17, 2018.  In the closing month-plus of the midterm campaigns he did a modest bit of travel to support Democratic candidates.  In Oct. 2018 a former Republican House Speaker charged Hickenlooper with ethics violations related to travel, but Hickenlooper dismissed the charges as frivilous (+).  Hickenlooper is seen as a moderate.  He has even been subject of speculation that he might join with Gov. John Kasich (R) to form a unity ticket. 

Governor COS:  Patrick Meyers

PAC Director:  Brad Komar
Campaign manager on Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam's campaign for Governor of Virginia, 2017.  State lead on Hillary Clinton's campaign in the Mar. 1, 2016 Colorado Democratic caucuses.  Campaign manager on Gov. Hickenlooper's successful re-election in 2014.  Campaign manager on Ralph Northam for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, Feb.-Dec. 2013.  Campaign manager on Larry Maggi for Congress (Washington, PA), Feb.-Nov. 2012.  Campaign manager on NJ Senate/Assembly races, June-Dec 2011.  Field director in CD24 (Utica) for the New York State Democratic Committee, May-Nov. 2010.  Regional field director on the Obama campaign in Rolla, Missouri, June-Nov. 2008.  Field organizer and delegate selection coordinator on Hillary Clinton for President, June 2007-Jan. 2008.  Graduate of The George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs, 2011.

Pollster:  Anna Greeberg
Fundraising:  FK & Co.

Governor's Office  ||  Giddy Up PAC:  FEC  ||  C-SPAN

Nicholas Riccardi and James Anderson.  "Colorado's Hickenlooper staffs up for possible 2020 bid."  The Associated Press, Dec. 5, 2018.
David Siders.  "He's going to do it ... He's got a theory."  Politico, Sept. 26, 2018.

Former Attorney General Eric Holder, Jr. — National Democratic Redistricting Committee
Eric Holder has a platform as chairman of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, which encompasses a PAC (section 527 organization), 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4).  NDRC targeted 12 states in 2018 and has announced another 12 states it is targeting in 2019-20.  Holder campaigned for candidates in the midterms but drew criticism for a remark at one event that "when they [Republicans] go low, we kick them."  Holder is a partner at Covington & Burling LLP and has a book in the works.  He is such lightening rod figure among some conservatives, that it is difficult to visualize him winning a general election.

NDRC Executive Director:  Kelly Ward
(Feb. 2018)  DCCC executive director throughout the 2014 and 2016 cycles, served as DCCC political director in the 2012 cycle, and directed the DCCC's incumbent retention efforts in the 2010 cycle.  Campaign manager on Alan Khazei's campaign for the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination in the Massachusetts special election (Dec. 8, 2009 primary).  Director of America Forward, a coalition of non-profits, starting in Aug. 2007.  Executive director of The Project for Arizona's Future, first part of 2007.  Campaign manager on Harry Mitchell for Congress, 2006.  Special projects in the Office of Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano.  Master's degree from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government; bachelor's degree in political science and Spanish from the University of Arizona, 2002.  Las Vegas native.  twitter


Noah Kulwin.  "Eric Holder talks Rod Rosenstein, His Work with Uber and Airbnb and His Record Prosecuting Bankers."  New York, Oct. 15, 2018.

Vision PAC

Gov. Jay Inslee — Democratic Governors Association / Vision PAC
Gov. Jay Inslee's position as chairman of the Democratic Governors Association from Dec. 4, 2017 to Dec. 1, 2018 afforded him the opportunity to connect with donors and build a national profile.  During the 2018 cycle, Democrats picked up seven seats.  Inslee formed a federal PAC, Vision PAC, very late in the cycle, on Oct. 4, 2018.  He is up for re-election in 2020, but has not said if he will seek a third term.

Governor COS:  David Postman

Vision PAC
Aisling Kerins
Principal at AK Consulting from Jan. 2017.  Campaign manager on Gov. Inslee's 2016 re-election, Oct. 2015-Dec. 2016.  Director of external relations to Gov. Inslee, Jan. 2013-Oct. 2015.  Deputy campaign manager on Jay Inslee for Washington, Jan.-Nov. 2012.  Campaign director on Suzan DelBene for Congress, Jan.-Nov. 2010.  Campaign director for No on I-1033, June-Nov. 2009.  GOTV director for MoveOn.org, March 2008-June 2009.  Associate and interim executive director at Futurewise, Jan. 2007-March 2008.  Campaign director for No on I-933, Jan. 2005-Nov. 2006.  Field director for Yes on 297, June 2004-Dec. 2005.  Field director at WashPIRG, Aug. 2000-June 2004.  B.A. in English, art history from University of Richmond, 2000.

Fundraiser:  Tracy Newman
Spokesperson:  Jamal Raad  twitter

Governor's Office  ||  Vision PAC:  FEC  ||  C-SPAN

Jim Brunner.  "Gov. Jay inslee's new PAC raises $112,000 as he 'actively' considers presidential run."  Seattle Times, Dec. 6, 2018.

Follow the North Star Fund

Sen. Amy Klobuchar — Follow the North Star Fund / Klobuchar for Minnesota
Sen. Amy Klobuchar faced little difficulty in her 2018 re-election campaign.  From 2013-18 she raised $10.6 million, spent $8.9 million and had cash on hand of about $4.4 million.  During the midterms Klobuchar kept a relatively low political profile nationally, not doing a lot of travel to stump with candidates or speak at party events around the country.  With her Midwestern roots and calm demeanor her approach would stand as a polar opposite to the Trump presidency if she decides to run.

Senate COS:  Brigit Helgen

Campaign Manager, Klobuchar for Minnesota (2018 re-elect);  Joe Radosevich
(Jan. 2018)  Chief of staff in the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, Jan.-Dec. 2017; campaign manager on Josh Shapiro for Attorney General, Jan. 2016-Jan. 2017.  Executive direoctor of the Montgomery County Democratic Committee's Coordinated Campaign (Norristown, PA),  Feb.-Dec. 2015.  Senior advisor and special assistant to Sen. Klobuchar, Jan. 2012-Jan. 2015.  Senior associate-political director at Kennedy Communications Inc., May 2009-Dec. 2011.  Bodyman, aide on Entenza for Governor, Jan.-Aug. 2010.  Staff assistant in the U.S. Senate May 2007-May 2008.  B.A. in political communication from The George Washington University, 2009.  twitter

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Klobuchar for Minnesota (2018 re-elect):  FEC | Open Secrets / Follow the North Star Fund (Leadership PAC):  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

Former Gov. Terry McAuliffe — Common Good VA
Former Gov. Terry McAuliffe finished his four-year term on Jan. 13, 2018 (+). In the 2018 cycle, McAuliffe did some campaigning for Democrats, but there was not the intensity of efforts one would expect of someone eying a White House bid.  While he has said he would not rule out a run, a McAuliffe campaign appears unlikely. 

Long-time aide:  Yael Belkind
Communications:  Crystal Carson twitter

Common Good VA:  Virginia Department of Elections | VPAP  ||  C-SPAN


U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley — Jeff Merkley for Oregon / Opportunity and Renewal PAC
Sen. Jeff Merkley's Opportunity and Renewal PAC branded its support for candidates in 2018 as the "Blue Wave Project."  Merkley is a solid progressive, but if he runs likely lacks the flash to break out from what is expected to be a crowded Democratic field.  He has, however, had a couple of moments that drew national attention.  On Apr. 4-5, 2017 he conducted a 15-hour talk-a-thon against the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch.  On June 3, 2018 he posted on Facebook a much watched video in which he was denied entry to a detention facility for migrant children in Brownsville, TX (+).  Merkley is up for re-election in 2020, and Oregon statutes prevent individuals from running for more than one office (249.013).

Senate COS:  Michael Zamore

Communications:  Ray Zaccaro

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Merkley for Oregon (2020 re-elect):  FEC | Open Secrets / Opportunity and Renewal PAC (Leadership PAC):  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

Edward Isaac Dovere.  "Meet the Leader of the Vast Left Wing Conspiracy,"  Politico Magazine, Sept. 19, 2017.

Former Gov. Martin O'Malley — Win Back Your State
On Nov. 16, 2017, former Gov. Martin O'Malley filed with the FEC to establish a PAC, Win Back Your State.  O'Malley was very active during the midterms stumping with candidates around the country and speaking at Democratic events.  The PAC reported total federal receipts of $336,116.87 and total disbursements of $351,435.86.  This modest showing and O'Malley's early exit from the 2016 presidential race would not seem encouraging for a second presidential run.

Win Back Your State:  FEC  ||  C-SPAN  |  P2016

Soon to be former State Sen. Richard Ojeda — Ojeda for President
State Sen. Richard Ojeda announced his candidacy on Nov. 12, 2018, making a strong populist pitch.  Ojeda had just finished running for Congress in West Virginia's 3rd CD, where he attracted some national attention and raised about $2.2 million but ultimately lost to Carol Miller (R) by a 56.4%-43.6% margin.  With many high profile candidates likely to run, this campaign will face a very difficult struggle for attention and resources. 

Campaign Manager:  Steven Hall
Per Roll Call, Hall is Ojeda's brother-in-law and was finance chairman of Ojeda's congressional campaign.
Communications:  Madalin Sammons

Resources:  Ojeda for President: FEC  ||  West Virginia State Senate  ||  Coverage

Greg Jaffe.  "For a groundbreaking candidate in West Virginia, big money and attention come with downsides."  The Washington Post, Nov. 1, 2018.
Simone Pathé.  "The Unlikely Campaign Behind Richard Ojeda's Rise in West Virginia."  Roll Call, July 10, 2018.
Craig Hudson.  "He's JFK With Tatoos and a Bench Press."  Politico Magazine, Mar. 2, 2018.
Mason Adams.  "A New Kind of West Virginia Democrat."  The New Republic, Sept. 22, 2017.

Soon to be former U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke
For Democrats U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke was the mega-star candidate of 2018, and as the year drew to a close O'Rouke was the hot prospect.  Many observers compared the young, hip, and well-spoken congressman from El Paso to Barack Obama; if he runs in 2020 he would be a top-tier candidate upon entry.  O'Rourke raised record amounts in his challenge to U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R), reporting total receipts of $80.3 million.  The campaign "put it all on the table," making total disbursements of $80.2 million and finishing with cash on hand of less than $500,000. O'Rourke ultimately fell short by a 50.89% to 48.33% margin.  During his campaign O'Rourke said he would not run for president in 2020, but in a Nov. 26 town hall he said that he and his wife had "made a decision not to rule anything out."

Senate COS: David Wysong

Campaign Manager (Beto for Senate):  Jody Casey
(Sept. 2017)  Eighteen-year career in the private sector; with GE from 1999, mostly in the energy industry.  B.S. in management from Georgia Institute of Technology.

House Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN 

Tessa Stuart.  "Inside the Final Days of Beto's Battle for Texas."  Rolling Stone, Nov. 4, 2018.
Nash Jenkins.  "Beto O'Rourke Is on a Long, Hard Road."  Time, May 22, 2018.
Eric Benson.  "Does Beto O'Rourke Stand a Chance Against Ted Cruz?"  Texas Monthly, Jan. 2018.

America 2.0 PAC

U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan — America 2.0 PAC
U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan represents CD-13 in Northeastern Ohio, the Youngstown/Akron area; he was first elected to Congress in 2002.  The area was formerly represented by another 2020 prospect, Sen. Sherrod Brown.  Ryan is not well known nationally, although he did challenge Nancy Pelosi for the position of House Democratic Leader in 2016.  He made trips to the early states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, and drew attention in July 2018 when he hired Pete D'Alessandro, a veteran Iowa operative who in 2015-16 served as campaign coordinator for Bernie Sanders, to advise him.

House COS: Ron Grimes

House Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Tim Ryan for Congress: FEC | Open Secrets / America 2.0 PAC: FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

Ryan Grim and Zaid Jilani.  "Ohio Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan Is Telling People He Will Run for President in 2020, Hoping to Win 'Yoga Vote.'"  The Intercept, July 23, 2018.

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders — Our Revolution / Friends of Bernie Sanders
Our Revolution, the group that grew out of Sanders' 2016 campaign, has experienced some ups and downs.  In May 2018 Politico ran a couple of articles describing "widespread problems within the group": "Bernie's army in disarray" (May 21) and "Second top official resigns from Bernie Sanders group" (May 24).   Our Revolution endorsed 196 candidates in 44 states as well as 41 ballot initiatives in the Nov. 2018 midterm elections.  Sanders himself campaigned extensively for candidates around the country.  Although he was up for re-election in 2018, his race was non-competitive; from 2013-18 he raised $11.2 million, spent $6.0 milllion and finished with cash on hand of $8.8 million.  If Sanders runs, it may be very difficult for him to recapture the magic of his 2016 campaign, when his authenticity provided a sharp contrast to the scripted Hillary Clinton; this time there are expected to be many more candidates.

Senate COS: Caryn Compton (promoted from leg. dir. in Sept. 2018, succeeding Michaeleen Crowell)
Deputy COS: Ari Rabin-Havt  twitter

Senior Political Advisor  Jeff Weaver
President of Our Revolution until June 2017.  Campaign manager on Bernie 2016.  Founder and president of Victory Comics in Falls Church, VA.  Started as a legislative assistant to Sanders in his House office in 1986 while attending law school, served as Sanders' House chief of staff in the early 2000s, as his 2006 campaign manager, and as his Senate chief of staff from Jan. 2007-July 2009.  J.D. from Georgetown University School of Law, 1996; undergraduate degree from University of Vermont, 1990.  Originally from Franklin County.  Author of How Bernie Won (Thomas Dunne Books,

Our Revolution
President:  Nina Turner
(announced June 29, 2017)  Key surrogate for Sen. Sanders in his 2016 presidential campaign.  Democratic nominee for Ohio Secretary of State in 2014.  Selected to fill a vacancy in the Ohio State Senate, started in Sept. 2008 and elected unopposed to a full term in 2010.  Elected to Cleveland City Council in 2005 and served to Sept. 2008.  Unsuccessful run for Cleveland City Council in 2001.  Director of government affairs for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.  Executive assistant of legislative affairs to Mayor Michael White.  Legislative aide to state Sen. Rhine McLin.  B.A. and M.A. degrees from Cleveland State Univeristy; from A.A. from Cuyahoga Community College.  Cleveland native.  twitter

Political Director:  David Duhalde
(Oct. 2018)  Started in Jan. 2018 as senior electoral manager.  Deputy director at Democratic Socialists of America, Aug. 2015-Dec. 2017.  Research analyst at Every Vocies, Mar. 2014-July 2015.  Research associate at Massachusetts Nonprofit Network, Nov. 2010-Mar. 2011.  Canvasser for Ocean State Action, Sept.-Nov. 2008.  National youth organizer at Democratic Socialists of America, Aug. 2006-Aug. 2008.  M.B.A. in poverty alleviation from Brandeis University, 2014; B.A. in political science and government and East Asian studies from Bowdoin College, 2006.

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Friends of Bernie Sanders (2018 re-elect): FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  P2016  |  America Rising

Gabriel Debenedetti.  "Inside Bernie Sanders’s Head."  New York, Nov. 25, 2018.
Alexander Nazaryan.  "Bernie Sanders: Why Democrats Can’t Win Midterms 2018 Without Him."  Newsweek, May 24, 2018.


Tom Steyer — NextGen America and Need to Impeach
Hedge fund billionaire and philanthropist Tom Steyer was mentioned as a possiblie candidate for Senate or governor of California, but on Jan. 8, 2018 he announced he would not be a candidate.  Instead, he proved to be one of the big players in the 2018 midterms, investing $120 million through NextGen America (+) and Need to Impeach; he also held town halls around the country.  The teams (+) he has built up in those organizations could serve Steyer well if he decides to run in 2020.  The fact that he has not served in public office before may weigh against him in some voters' minds, however.  On Nov. 20, 2018, Steyer announced his "5 Rights" platform (the rights to: an equal vote, clean air and clean water, learn, a living wage, health).  In Dec. and Jan. he is to "host a series of conversations with local leaders, issue-area experts, and everyday Americans to discuss why these 5 Rights are essential and what they mean to everyday Americans."

NextGen America
Executive Director:  Heather Hargreaves
(Jan. 2018, also executive vice president from Dec. 2017)  Vice president, national program (Jan. 2016-May 2017) and national advocacy director (Sept. 2015-Jan. 2016) at NextGen Climate.  Deputy field director on the Alliance for Climate Protection, Mar. 2009-Sept. 2010.  General election director on the Campaign for Change in Nevada, June-Nov. 2008; field director in Chicago (Mar.-June 2008) and regional field director in Reno, NV (May 2007-Mar. 2008) on Obama for America.  Field director on Steve Westly for Governor (CA), July 2005-June 2006.  Early vote and volunteer czar on Iowa Democrats' coordinated campaign in Fall 2004; earlier in 2003-04 she was a regional director on Wesley Clark's NH primary campaign, based in Hanover, after serving same role on Sen. Bob Graham's NH primary campaign (Upper Valley field organizer).  B.A. in economics, political science from Stanford University, 2003; served as president of Stanford Democrats.  twitter
Others include: National Organizing Director: Hannah Bristol  -  Communications Director:  Aleigha Cavalier  - Data and Analytics Director:  Amit Mistry - Senior Advisor: Jamison Foser

Need to Impeach
Lead Strategist:  Kevin Mack, senior partner at Deliver Strategies  twitter
Managing Director:  Sandra Lyon
(Jan. 2018)  Independent consultant since 2011.  Political communications for American Federation of Teachers, Dec. 2015-Nov. 2017.  Chief of staff at Connecticut Democratic Party, Sept. 2013-Jan. 2015.  Director of direct mail on Obama for America, April-Nov. 2012.  Vice president of marketing and communications at Elite Global Events, Inc., March 2011-March 2012.  Managing director at TruBlu Politics, April-Nov. 2010.  Account executive at the Mack Crounse Group, Nov. 2009-March 2010.  Director of scheduling on the Deeds for Governor campaign in Virginia, Fall 2009.  Account executive at the Mack Crounse Group, Fall 2008.  Director of the chairwoman's office and national delegate selection (2007-08) and research director (2006-07) at the Florida Democratic Party.  Communications director at Research Management Strategies in New Brunswick, NJ, Fall 2005.  Deputy communications director in Arizona and Oregon for America Coming Together, Fall 2004.  Deputy director of the Women's Senate Network at the DSCC, 2003-04.  Communications coordinator at the DNC, 2002-03.  Bachelor's degree in political science and mass communications from Arizona State University.  twitter

Influence Watch  |  C-SPAN

Tom Dickinson.  "Tom Steyer Opens Up About His Would-Be Assassin, the Midterms, His 2020 Plans and More." Rolling Stone, Oct. 31, 2018.
Edward-Isaac Dovere.  "How Tom Steyer Built the Biggest Political Machine You’ve Never Heard Of."  The Atlantic, Oct. 19, 2018.

U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell
U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell represents CA-15  in the East Bay; he was elected in 2012 defeating veteran lawmaker U.S. Rep. Pete Stark.  Swalwell offers a strong appeal to millennials; in April 2015 he founded Future Forum, a group of "young Democratic Members of the House of Representatives who are focused on issues and opportunities for millennial Americans."  Future Forum has held events around the country (+).  According to Pat Rynard's Iowa Starting Line, in 2017-18, Swalwell made 14 trips to Iowa (totaling 24 days), more than any 2020 prospect except declared candidate U.S. Rep. John Delaney.

House COS: Alex Evans

House Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Swalwell for Congress: FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN

PAC for a Level Playing Field

U.S. Sen Elizabeth Warren — Elizabeth for MA / PAC for a Level Playing Field / Elizabeth Warren Presidential Exploratory Committee
Facing re-election in 2018, Sen. Elizabeth Warren was not in a compettive race, winning by a comfortable margin over state Rep. Geoff Diehl, 60.3% to 36.3%.  From 2013-18 Warren raised $34.7 million and spent $22.5 million, finishing with cash on hand of $12.5 million which could be transferred to a presidential campaign.  Although Warren did not venture out on the national campaign trail as much as some of the other 2020 prospects,pre-presidential campaign activity was going on behind the scenes.  For example, in Fall 2018 Warren staffers served as communications directors for the state parties in New Hampshire and South Carolina.  There was one discordant note.  With 2020 apparently in mind, on Oct. 15 Warren released results of a DNA test to resolve questions about her Native American heritage.  The move stirred up a fair bit of news and was seen as a "misstep" or "stumble" or even "disastrous" and not helpful to her prospects if she decides on a presidential campaign.  In 2015-16, Warren resisted efforts to encourage her to run (+).  This time she appears more open to the idea, but with many possible choices for progressive voters, the field may be more difficult to navigate.  The Boston Globe editorialized on Dec. 7, “Warren missed her moment in 2016, and there’s reason to be skeptical of her prospective candidacy in 2020.”  Also on Dec. 7 the Washington Post reported Mindy Myers, who managed Warren's 2012 campaign and then served as her chief of staff, "has been in talks with several rival campaigns and is planning to meet soon with Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Tex.)."  Warren drew attention for announced Anne Reid as her chief of staff on Dec. 27 (+). Closing out the year, on Dec. 31 Warren became the second of the nationally prominent Democratic prospects to take a formal step towards launching a presidential campaign, forming an exploratory committee (+).

Senate COS:  Dan Geldon (to latter part of Oct. 2018)

Campaign Manager, Elizabeth for MA (2018 re-elect):  Roger Lau
(Jan. 2018)  Moved over from serving as state director in Warren's Senate office; started in that role in Jan. 2013.  Political director on Warren's 2012 campaign from Sept. 2012 and Jan.-June 2012.  District director to U.S. Rep. Richard Neal (MA), June-Sept. 2012.  Deputy state director to Sen. John Kerry, Jan. 2011-Mar. 2012.  Campaign manager for Richard Neal, July-Nov. 2010.  Deputy state director to Sen. John Kerry, Jan.-July 2010.  Campaign manager on Mike Capuano for U.S. Senate, Sept.-Dec. 2009.  Chief of protocol at the U.S. Department of Commerce, June-Sept. 2009.  Deputy state director to Sen. Kerry, Jan.-June 2009.  Campaign manager on John Kerry for U.S. Senate, Mar.-Nov. 2008.  Worked on Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign in NH, MA (state director), ME and RI, Nov. 2007-Mar. 2008.  Campaign manager on Nikki Tsongas for Congress, Mar.-Oct. 2007.  District director to U.S. Rep. Marty Meehan (MA), Jan. 2006-April 2007.  Massachusetts press secretary to Sen. Kerry, Oct. 1999-Jan. 2006.  Staffer on John Kerry for President, Jan. 2003-Nov. 2004.  B.A. in political science from UMass Amherst, 2000.

Senate Office  |  Congress.gov  ||  Elizabeth for MA (2018 re-elect):  FEC | Open Secrets / PAC for a Level Playing Field (Leadership PAC):  FEC | Open Secrets  ||  C-SPAN  |  P2016  |  America Rising

Matt Viser.  "As her DNA test still reverberates, Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s political operation shows fissures."  The Washington Post, Dec. 7, 2018.
Astead W. Herndon.  "Elizabeth Warren Stands By DNA Test. But Around Her, Worries Abound."  New York Times, Dec. 6, 2018.
Matt Viser.  "Elizabeth Warren builds expansive Democratic campaign effort ahead of likely 2020 bid." The Washington Post, Oct. 14, 2018.
Rebecca Traister. "Leader of the Persistence," New York, July 23, 2018.
Jaime Fuller.  "The Committee to Destroy Elizabeth Warren," Boston, April 17, 2018.
Andy Kroll.  "Why Is Elizabeth Warren So Hard to Love?"  Boston, April 2, 2017.

Andrew Yang
Entrepreneur Andrew Yang filed statement of organization on Nov. 6, 2017, and announced his candidacy on Feb. 2, 2018.  He is running to advance the idea of a universal basic income.

Campaign Manager:  Zach Graumann

(Mar. 2018)  Co-founder and CEO of SuitUp Incorporated, from June 2014.  Director, head of client philanthropy solutions (June 2014-Mar. 2018); associate director, strategic analyst, wealth management transformation (April 2012-May 2014); and graduate training program analyst (July 2010-April 2012) for UBS Wealth Management.  A.B. in public policy, markets and management studies from Duke University, 2010.  twitter

Friends of Andrew Yang: FEC  ||  C-SPAN

Marianne Williamson
The lecturer, author and activist announced formation of an exploratory committee on Nov. 15, 2018 (+).  She plans "a big announcement" on Jan. 28.
marianneforamerica.com  marianne.com

U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet
The Colorado Senator did little in 2018 to raise his national profile.  On Nov. 20 the AP reported he "has been in contact with some influential Iowa Democrats."  Bennet has said he is "thinking about it."
Senate Office  |  Bennet for Colorado

Howard Schultz

Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is said to be considering a run and has a book coming out on Feb. 19, 2019.  See: Brian Schwartz.  "Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz assembles an elite PR team as he considers running for president."  CNBC, Nov. 9, 2018.
Howard Schultz

2020 Presidential Form 2 Filers.



Not In

Former MO Sec. of State Jason Kander
Let America Vote

announced candidacy for mayor of Kansas City on June 25, 2018; ended campaign on Oct. 2 citing PTSD
Attorney Michael Avenatti
The Fight PAC

Dec. 4, 2018 statement
Former MA Gov. Deval Patrick
Reason to Believe PAC

Dec. 6, 2018 facebook post

Iowa Visits
Patrick Rynard's Iowa Starting Line reports 28 Democratic presidential prospects made over 100 visits to Iowa in the pre-campaign period: 118 visits totaling 169 days from Dec. 2016 to Election Day Nov. 6, 2018 and 127 visits totaling 180 days from Dec. 2016 to Dec. 31, 2018.  The statistics for visits by candidates, potential candidates and former potential candidates through year end 2018 are:


2 visits: Castro (4 days), Inslee (3 days), Khanna (3 days), Moulton (2 days).
1 visit: Booker (4 days), Garcetti (2 days), Hickenlooper (2 days), Biden (1 day), De Blasio (1 day), Harris (1 day), Hassan (1 day), Kerry (1 day), Ojeda (1 day).
Ruled out running: Kander (16 visits, 17 days).  Avenatti (2 visits, 2 days).

Independent Efforts (Chronological)

Run Tulsi Run
"founded on February 28, 2016 after Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D) resigned from the DNC. RTR was conceptualized in March as the foundation for a truly people powered movement to help propel Tulsi Gabbard to the White House." Facebook

Draft Oprah 2020
A.J. Stevens, who is a councilman in Baldwin City, KS, filed with the FEC to establish the PAC in Oct. 2017, but the www.OprahforPotus.org website was non-functional by the end of 2018.  See: Meredith McGraw. "Why a suburban Midwest dad started a Draft Oprah 2020 PAC."  ABC News, Jan. 8, 2018.

Time for Biden
Matthew Graf of Rock Island, IL and Collin West of East Moline, IL started this effort in Dec. 2017 and filed to form a committee on Jan. 8, 2018.  They shut it down in March 2018 after a close friend of Biden respectfully asked them not to continue.  FEC
National Committee to Draft Oprah Winfrey for President of the United States 2020
Cormac Flynn launched this effort on Jan. 15, 2018 and filed with the FEC on Jan. 19, 2018.  According to its website, the committee aimed "to recruit 1,000,000 founding members to support its efforts to draft Ms. Winfrey."  "Ms. Winfrey’s entrance into the race at any future time is sure to coalesce millions of voters looking for genuine leadership as befits the stature of the office and our nation’s creed," the site stated.  Further, "She embodies proven character and leadership and has already earned the respect of dignitaries and heads of state around the globe.  We believe that her entry into the race will elevate the dialog and help regain the confidence of our friends and allies the world over who know and trust her." 

Founder/Director/Treasurer  Cormac Flynn
Consultant and coach (Act for Change), since 2014.  Vice president at the League of Conservation Voter Education Fund, Jan. 2005-Jan. 2014.  Program director at the Federation of State Conservation Voter Leagues, June 1998-Dec. 2004.  Campaign management and fundraising, 1988-98.  B.S. in social sciences from Bard College, 1989.  From New York City.
This site launched about a week after Oprah's much heralded speech at the Golden Globe awards (+).  While it appears to be sincere, there were skeptics; the emptywheel.net website described this effort as a "likely example of opportunism in a Jan. 15 post  headlined "Let the Pro-Oprah Resistance Beware: Scam in Progress?"

  Progressives for Equality Truth and Ethics PAC (PETE PAC)
"In March of 2018, I started the "Draft Mayor Pete" movement to bring together progressives together, focused on our shared values and belief in the future. Mayor Pete is a uniquely suited candidate to bring together Democrats from every part of our big tent party."  Meier launched the mayorpeteforamerica.com website along with an active Facebook and Twitter presence, and on Nov. 15, 2018 he filed with the FEC to formally establish a PAC.

Founder and Spokesman  Mark Meier
Communications associate at the Treatment Advocacy Center in Arlington, VA, from Dec. 2018.  Legal administrative associate at 340B Health, May 2017-Oct. 2018.  B.A. in political science from Gustavus Adolphus College, 2017.

"Tenaciously Moving for American Change in 2020" (TMAC 2020 PAC)
Launched on Oct. 8, 2018 to "encourage" former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe to run.  Shannon Kane (+) is a co-founder.  The group's website, readyforterry.com, lists eight "staff": Graham Weinshenk (Director of Operations and Spokesperson), Reily Connaughton (Finance Director), Christopher Hopkins (Political Director), Quincey Smith (Data Director), Barrett Fife (Facebook Manager), Brooke Miller (Twitter Manager), Nicholas Sones (Research Associate) and Cody Mills (Assistant Political Director), and says there are several others.

ready for Garcetti
Has not publicly launched, but an article in Rolling Stone describes the effort.  One of the highlights is an “'urban Latino beat song' produced by Chicago musicians titled 'Eric Garcetti, Are you ready?'”

Andy Kroll.  "The Campaign to Draft L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti for 2020 Is Underway."  Rolling Stone, Nov. 21, 2018.

Natalie Rayes
Vice president of public affairs for Grupo Salinas in the United States, and
in charge of Grupo Salinas’ philanthropic activities in the U.S..  Served as L.A. Mayor James K. Hahn's deputy chief of staff, directing the Mayor’s Office of Intergovernmental Relations.  Senior policy advisor to L.A. Councilmember Mike Feuer.  Department of State fellow in the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt.  B.A. in sociology and Masters in Public Policy from UCLA.  Massachusetts resident.

  Draft Beto 2020
Launched Nov. 28, 2018 by Lauren Pardi, Will Herberich and Adam Webster.

"As Democrats, we need to nominate a candidate who will move our country past four years of turmoil and bigotry.

"Even more important, we need to nominate a candidate who can unite Democrats - and all Americans - around a shared, inclusive vision of who we are as a party and a nation. Democrats win when we remind people what we stand for: fairness, inclusivity, and bold, progressive solutions to the challenges we all face.

"We believe the candidate best-suited to run such a campaign - and win back the White House - is Beto O’Rourke."

Lauren Pardi
Principal at Lealtà Strateges in Boston, from Feb. 2017.  Communications and special projects manager, Jan. 2015-Jan. 2017.  Finance director on Steve Kerrigan for Lieutenant Governor, Jan. 2013-Nov. 2014.  Event director  - Office of CEO for the Democratic National Convention Committee in Charlotte, July-Sept. 2012.  Executive associate at The Scannell Group in Boston, Nov. 2009-June 2012.  Operations and deputy GOTV director on Ruth Balser for Mayor in Newton, MA, Aug.-Nov. 2009.  Degree in journalism from UMass Amherst, 2009.

Will Herberich
Managing director of communications and digital at P.A.C.E. Education Strategies in Boston from Mar. 2018.  Previously a spokesman for Families for Excellent Schools.  B.A. in international relations and affairs from Tufts University, 2010.

Adam Webster
Principal at Castle Point Partners LLC in Boston from Feb. 2014.  Political director and deputy campaign manager on John Connolly for Mayor of Boston, Mar.-Nov. 2013.  Chief of staff to Boston Cit Councilor At-Large John Connolly, Jan. 2008-Feb. 2013.  Assistant to the chief of staff in the Mass. Attorney General's Office, Jan. 2006-Mar. 2007.  B.A. in political science from Boston College, 2005.

Organizing for Bernie
This federal PAC formed by four former Bernie 2016 staffers launched on Dec. 3, 2018 as a "people-powered, volunteer campaign meant to recruit Senator Bernie Sanders as a presidential candidate in the 2020 Democratic Primary and lay the groundwork for a successful campaign operation."  Petition

Rich Pelletier
Partner at Prism Communications in the Denver area from Jan. 2017.  Bernie 2016 deputy campaign manager from March-Aug. 2016; started as the campaign's national field director from Nov. 2015-March 2016.  Vice president at New Partners, March 2013-Nov. 2015.  Field director at America Votes, Jan. 2010-March 2013.  Colorado state director at America Votes, May 2006-Dec. 2009.  Executive director at the Maine Democratic Party, Jan. 2005-Jan. 2006.  State director at America Coming Together, Nov. 2003-Dec. 2004.  Political director at Think About It, May-Nov. 2003.  Special assistant to the Maine Speaker of the House, June 2000-Dec. 2002.  Field director for U.S. Rep. John Baldacci, 1994-97.  Degree in political science from University of Maine, 1995.

Dulce Saenz
Bernie 2016 regional field director after serving as state director for the Colorado caucus campaign and the Washington caucus campaign.  Latino organizing program director at Conservation Colorado from Feb. 2014.  Latino outreach director at Colorado Commits to Kids, Aug.-Nov. 2013.  Southwest Den.ver organizer at State for Children, Sept. 2011-May 2013.  B.A. in political science from University of Denver, 2011.  Grew up in the town of Hudson on the northeastern Colorado plains.

Mandy Nunes-Hennessey
Colorado state caucus and delegate director for Bernie 2016.  Experience on numerous issue and candidate campaigns, and has worked for Mental Health Colorado.

Spencer Carnes
Campaign manager on Jena Griswold for Colorado, Aug.-Dec. 2017.  Organizing and engagement strategist for Middle Seat, Feb.-May 2017.  Campus organizing director for the Colorado Democratic Party, May-Nov. 2016.  Field and delegate organizer in Colorado for Bernie 2016, Jan.-Apr. 2016.  Founder and executive director of Buffs for Bernie group at University of Colorado Boulder, July 2015-Jan. 2016.  B.A. in English language and literature, general and political science from University of Colorado Boulder, 2016.

Early Cover-age of Potential Democratic Candidates
Oct. 22, 2018
Oct. 2018
Feb. 19, 2018
Sept. 14, 2018
Dec. 17, 2018
June 1, 2018
Aug. 13, 2018
July 23, 2018
Mar. 2018
Mar. 12, 2018

Note: Beto O'Rourke appeared on the cover of the Jan. 2018 issue of Texas Monthly, but was not seen as a potential presidential candidate at that time.