Long-shot Candidates Get Noticed

3 easy ways to get yourself noticed when you're a long-shot Democratic presidential candidate.

Meet the 2020 Democratic Long-Shot Candidates

It might seem noticeable that having a huge field, as Democrats have for their 2020 presidential nomination, would make it easier for a relatively ambiguous candidate to surge to the top of the polls. Democrats might not have an “preordained” frontrunner — the role that Hillary Clinton played in 2016 or Al Gore did in 2000. But that very lack of heavyweights has encouraged pretty much every plausible smaller scaled contender to join the field, or at least to sincerely consider doing so. Take the top 10 candidates, who are a moderately diverse bunch in terms of race, gender and age — every major Democratic electorate is spoken for by at least one of the contenders. After all, it was the lack of competition that helped Bernie Sanders gain ground in 2016; he was the only game in town other than Clinton.

As coverage of the abundance of candidates in this election cycle ramps up, people might detect a hint of skepticism about most of their chances. The “five corners” refers to what is claimed to be the five major constituencies within the Democratic Party: Party Loyalists, The Left, Millennials and Friends, Black voters and Hispanic voters; the thesis is that a politician must build a coalition consisting of at least three of these five groups to win the primary. It’s not that some of the candidates couldn’t hold their own if shoved into the spotlight against one or two other opponents. Instead, it’s that most of them will never get the opportunity to square off against the big names because the second tier will monopolize most of the money, staff talent and media attention.

Eventually the candidate who wins the nomination will be the one who can bridge the divides the best between the different constituencies within the party.


June 27, 2019 10:22 AM