Speaking to CNN's Brooke Baldwin Friday afternoon, Starbucks founder Howard Schultz revealed that he has begun "advance work" to prepare to get on the 2020 presidential ballot in every state and said if he decides to run as an independent candidate "more than 40 states" would be up for grabs.
BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN: Looking ahead to 2020. You are flirting with it, but obviously in order to be in the ball game as an independent, you have to get on the ballot in all 50 states and every state has different and complicated rules. So what are you doing right now to get on the ballot?
HOWARD SCHULTZ: Well we have done all of the work necessary to ensure the fact that we will be on the ballot in every state in the country. And I think that is so vitally important. Because in the last 30-plus years, eight to ten battleground states have decided the presidential election. If I enter the race, 40-plus states for the first time in 30-plus years, everyone's vote and voice will matter. 100 million people did not vote in 2016 in many ways because their vote didn't matter.
BALDWIN: Are you hiring state directors or collecting signatures, investing? Just specifically.
SCHULTZ: We have not started doing the work on signatures. But we've done all of the advanced work to ensure the fact that we will be on the ballot of every state, despite the impediments that the DNC and the RNC set up to prevent anyone who runs as an independent, but we have done that work. But what I was saying is so vitally important, it won't be eight to ten battleground states, it will be more than 40 states that will really matter and I'll only need 15% to get on the debate stage and it is a three-person race if I decide to run for president.