Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is officially calling it quits on his presidential bid
Hollis Johnson/Skye Gould/Business Insider
- Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is scrapping his 2020 presidential bid.
- The billionaire announced his decision in a letter posted to his website.
- "My belief in the need to reform our two-party system has not wavered, but I have concluded that an independent campaign for the White House is not how I can best serve our country at this time," Schultz wrote.
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Howard Schultz, the former Starbucks CEO, is officially calling off his run on the White House. The billionaire announced his decision in a letter posted to his website Friday.
Schultz wrote that "extreme voices currently dominate the national dialogue, often with a vitriol that crowds out and discourages thoughtful discussions," while the "exhausted majority" has "largely tuned out" of the process. Schultz has been an outspoken critic of US President Donald Trump, as well as more left-leaning Democrats. He has consistently expressed an extremely centrist ideology, decrying the vilification of capitalism and labeling the word "billionaire" an insult.
In his letter, Schultz cited "vitriol," the lack of support for independent candidates in the race against Trump, and election rules as motivating factors in his decision to drop out. Democrats, and even fellow billionaire Warren Buffett, expressed worries that an independent bid by Schultz would siphon votes away from a Democratic presidential candidate.
Business Insider's Kate Taylor previously reported in February that polls weren't showing Schultz much love, either. An Insider survey found that, of 1,093 respondents, a majority of people said they were "not at all familiar" with the presidential candidate.
But the former Starbucks CEO's announcement is far from a surprise. He was previously reported to have slowed down his presidential bid thanks to centrist Democratic candidate Joe Biden's involvement in the race. Schultz previously halted his campaigning after a back injury sustained in April that required three surgeries, which he also cited in his announcement.
"I implore my fellow Americans not to become hopeless or complacent," Schultz wrote. "We each have a responsibility, and a chance, to help our country reform its politics and live up to its ideals. How we do so is a journey we all must take. To everyone who has joined my journey, especially my family, my gratitude is limitless."
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