(CNN)Howard Schultz would like to be president. Which means that he believes that he, among the 300+ million people in this country, is uniquely suited to leading us.
It's almost like Howard Schultz isn't even trying
It's a bold thought! Especially when you can't even bring yourself to actually, you know, vote!
This, from the Seattle Times' Jim Brunner, is staggeringly bad for Schultz:
"King County Elections records show a postage-paid ballot for the Feb. 12 special election was mailed to the billionaire former Starbucks CEO and potential presidential candidate on Jan. 23, but never returned.
"The no-show was in line with Schultz's pattern of ignoring many elections over the decades, even while urging increased civic and political involvement by Americans."
Dude, what the actual hell?
Yes, this was a special election to approve a levy to help fund public schools in Seattle. It wasn't the presidential election. Or even a House race. But Schultz wants to be president! He wants to be the shining beacon of civil engagement and action in this country. And all he had to do was say he was either for or against the levy and then mail it in sometime between January 23 and February 12.The postage was already paid!
(Sidebar: We know where Schultz was on the actual day of the special election. He was in Houston -- participating in a CNN town hall.)
And Schultz already knew that his voting past was a potential problem. In January, the Seattle Times pointed out that Schultz had voted in just 11 of the 38 elections between 2005 and 2019 (One silver lining: Schultz has voted in every presidential election during that time period.)
Asked by the Seattle Times why, given that questions had already been raised about his past voting record, Schultz didn't fill out a ballot in the February 12 election, he issued this statement:
"It would have been great to vote in every election, and I commend all of the Seattleites who have a 100% voting record. I didn't vote in every local election, but I am proud of (Schultz's wife) Sheri's and my civic record in this community."
I repeat: Dude, what the actual hell?
Yes, it "would have been great to vote in every election" but most especially this one in your home city that came up after you'd been lambasted for not voting in past elections? Come on, man!
Now, Schultz's near-certain independent candidacy for president isn't going to fail because he didn't vote in a special election for a tax increase to help fund Seattle public schools. But his cavalier approach to the most fundamental act in a democracy that he wants to lead does raise questions about what his true motivations in his bid are.
Is Schultz a concerned citizen who decided he can't sit on the sidelines anymore and watch this political dysfunction? Or is he (yet another) rich guy who is bored and looking for another place to stuff his ambitions?
Not voting -- particularly after he's already gone public with your own presidential ambitions -- gives off a strong whiff that this is simply a vanity campaign for Schultz. He's conquered the business world and now thinks he can do the same in politics.
Concerning yourself about voting in every election? That's for regular people, apparently.
Now, maybe Schultz doesn't think like that about himself at all. But when you are a rich businessman with a spotty voting record who suddenly decide you want to run for president, then you need to be very careful about the message your actions (or inaction) sends.
This is, quite simply, a dumb move by Schultz. Very dumb.