Former Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday that he is going to think about a 2020 presidential bid, saying in response to a question about his plans that he was “not taking anything off the table.”
“I’ve said I’m not going to eliminate, I’m not taking anything off the table,” the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee said during an event at Harvard’s Institute of Politics. “But I’m not sitting around – I haven’t been running around to the most obvious states, laying any groundwork or doing anything. Am I going to think about it? Yeah, I’m going to think about it, I’ve said that point blank.”
During his remarks Tuesday, Kerry delivered a sharp criticism of the Trump administration on a series of issues including climate change and foreign relations.
“Simply because of all the things I’ve [talked] about. If you care about these things, you have to think about it. But I would love it – I mean, I’m the guy who picked Barack Obama to give the keynote at my convention. And I kind of thought, it would be great if he re-nominated me four years later,” Kerry said. “But it obviously worked out differently.”
Kerry’s comments come ahead of what is likely to be a large field of Democratic candidates vying to challenge President Donald Trump in 2020.
Kerry ran for president in 2004, securing the Democratic nomination before losing to President George W. Bush in the general election. His 2004 bid was preceded by a lengthy career in the Senate, which he left in 2013 to serve as secretary of state in the Obama administration. He referenced supporting Obama during his 2008 primary fight with Hillary Clinton to point out his willingness to back another potential 2020 contender, but added he doesn’t see that person yet.
“I’m perfectly ready to embrace somebody that I think can win, or who wants to address all the issues that I just talked about and understands them. But I’m going to be very candid here, and some people who are thinking about it aren’t going to love me for it, but I’m not – I don’t see the person yet that I’m prepared to say that about.”
Kerry, however, acknowledged fellow Obama administration alum Joe Biden could jump into the race, and praised the former VP – “I don’t know if Joe’s going to run, he’s a great pal of mine, we’ve known each other 40 years. He’s clearly qualified, clearly great, he understands all these issues, and let’s see what the decides to do.”
Kerry also praised former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, saying, “I like him very much. He’s been terrific on guns, he’s been terrific on climate change, he’s been terrific on inclusivity and other issues … that’s Mike Bloomberg, who’s an adult, and has built a hell of a business. And he’s an interesting person.”
“So, I’m open. I’m looking like all of you are,” Kerry said.