He is testing the waters for a possible run in 2020 as a self-described “centrist independent,” but the reaction has led to a lot of flak from Twitter users, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and now “The View” co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar.
Schultz appeared on the show on Tuesday and said that he, a lifelong Democrat, felt compelled to run as an independent “because of the toxicity and the lack of compromise of both parties.”
Although he agreed that President Donald Trump was “responsible for closing the government,” Schultz said both sides deserve blame for the harm that came to 800,000 unpaid federal workers.
A very skeptical Behar took him to task for the both-sides argument.
“You talk about the Democrats not wanting to negotiate. They cannot negotiate with a toddler. You give him the cookie one day, the next day he wants another cookie, so it’s not equal on both sides,” she said. “They had to play tough, the Democrats, with him, otherwise he will run amok. Now your entry into the race pretty much guarantees a Republican is going to win.”
Schultz disagreed, saying that a “far left” Democrat would also lose the general election.
“If he runs against a far-left, progressive person, who is suggesting 60 percent, 70 percent tax increases on the rich and a health care system we can’t pay for, President Trump is going to get re-elected,” Schultz said. “All I’m saying is, let me go out to the country and let the people hear my story. I grew up in the projects of Brooklyn. I gave my company comprehensive health insurance, equity in the form of stock options and free college tuition for every employee.”
Goldberg then told Schultz he was making the same kind of “I’m a businessman” claims that Trump used during his 2016 campaign.
“This is the same problem you-know-who has,” she said. “When you own your company, you can make these changes as you want them to be. When you have to report to the Senate and the Congress and all the 50 million people that come in the middle, that’s a little bit different.”
Later in the show, Schultz said he doesn’t want Trump to be re-elected ― and Behar had a sharp response.
“No one wants to see him fired more than me,” Schultz said.
“No one wants to see you run more than him,” Behar said.
You can see the interaction in the video below.