Oct 23, 2019 - Politics & Policy

Dick's CEO Ed Stack reportedly testing a 2020 presidential bid

Ed Stack sits at a table and is talking.

Ed Stack. Photo: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Dick's Sporting Goods CEO Ed Stack assembled a focus group this week to explore the possibility of a third-party presidential bid in 2020, Politico reports.

Why it matters: Under Stack, Dick's instituted tougher gun sales restrictions and destroyed $5 million worth of assault weapons rather than send them back to manufacturers. The post-Parkland moves were divisive in today's polarized climate and ultimately made a dent in the company's bottom line — which could lead to questions about Stack's motives to implement them as he tests the 2020 bid.

  • A serious third-party contender, especially one with cachet as a Republican donor and the personal wealth to bankroll a campaign, could have an impact on the 2020 race.
  • But Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz had a similar centrist focus and couldn't generate excitement for his own 2020 bid.

What happened: According to Politico, the focus group was shown short videos of Stack, along with videos of Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren and Schultz.

  • Focus group members were asked if they would consider a third-party candidate. The session ended with group members filling out sample ballots that matched Stack with Trump and Warren and with Trump and Biden.

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