We want to be careful with our use of metaphors when we suggest we are limiting your choices, so I will make no reference to weapons being pointed anywhere. Nonetheless, let me make this clear. We want you to tell us who, if you had to choose today, would be your pick for president among the current field of Republicans and Democrats.
The survey is on the right side of this page.
We included all 17 declared Republican candidates, the five declared Democrats, and Vice President Joe Biden, because he has not definitively said whether he will run. Even though rumors persist about Democrat Elizabeth Warren and 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney, we left them out because they have both said they will not. We also left out the other parties. That could change in the future.
This question comes a few hours before 10 Republicans occupy the main stage and seven get a forum nicknamed “the kids’ table” for the first major debate of the 2016 campaign season. Democrats are waiting until October to start their live arguments.
Carly Fiorina’s name is first because I alphabetized all 23 candidates, then drew a number to determine whose name would appear first.
One reason I wanted to do this was because of a question Travis Couture, Mason County Republican Party chairman, asked on Facebook Wednesday, whether he knew anyone whose first choice was Jeb Bush. I thought it was a great question. When I see people speak up online, it’s for Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. I might be missing someone, but it’s not Jeb Bush. He rates relatively high in the polls, but that doesn’t seem to translate into bigtime support among the online comment gallery. I did see a few people express appreciation for what Donald Trump has been saying, but those people didn’t say whether he’d be their first choice for president.
In the New York Times on Thursday Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said America deserves a “servant leader.”
“Our country is in desperate need of servant leaders, of men and women willing to kneel and embrace those who are not like them. Everyone seeking the presidency professes great love for our nation. But I ask myself, how can you be a genuine public servant if you belittle your fellow citizens and freeze out people who hold differing views?”
That is probably a wish for someone who already won the job, not for someone trying to get it. There will be belittling aplenty for the next 15 months.