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Starbucks founder Howard Schultz. Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images

Starbucks executive chairman Howard Schultz this morning batted down speculation that he plans to run for president, in an interview on Fox Business Network.

No I'm not.
— Howard Schultz, after being asked if he'll run in 2020.

Here's a transcript:

FBN's Maria Bartiromo: Are you going to run for president in 2020, Howard?
Schultz: “No I’m not – here we are sitting at Starbucks because of my day job as executive chairman on the heels of opening the most successful Starbucks store in our history in China, now we’re opening reserve stores. I’m trying to do everything I can to benefit our shareholders as executive chairman and I think as a private citizen, I’m very concerned to doing everything I can to elevate the national conversation to things that are not based on ideology but really trying to walk in the shoes of the American people and doing everything I possibly can to try and get some real, sensible levels of conversation that represent both sides.”
Bartiromo: “You are always seeing your position as a responsibility to bring people together. I know that, so just to clarify, you said you are not going to run for president?
Schultz: “I said I am doing everything I possibly can as a private citizen to advance the cause of the country.”
Bartiromo: “It sounds like you are running for president, Howard.”
Schultz: “No I didn’t say that. Come on, Maria.”

Schultz also criticized the recent tax changes, saying it was a "corporate tax cut" instead of "comprehensive tax reform... [that] could have done a lot more to help so many Americans who are being left behind.”

Go deeper

Updated 42 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas convicted of campaign finance crimes

Lev Parnas, a former associate of then-President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Florida businessman Lev Parnas was convicted Friday on charges of conspiracy to make foreign contributions to political campaigns, according to multiple outlets.

Why it matters: Prosecutors said Parnas, then an associate of former President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, funneled over $150,000 from a Russian businessman into U.S. campaigns as part of an effort to land licenses in the U.S.'s legal cannabis industry.

Supreme Court agrees to hear challenges to Texas abortion law

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear two cases challenging Texas' abortion law, which bans the procedure as soon as six weeks into pregnancy, but left the law in place in the meantime.

Why it matters: The court is moving extraordinarily fast on the Texas cases, compressing into just a few days a process that normally takes months. And that schedule means the court will take up Texas' ban a month before it hears another major abortion case — a challenge to Mississippi's own 2018 ban on abortions after 15 weeks.

Officials warn 5 key tech sectors will determine whether China overtakes U.S.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

U.S. intelligence officials responsible for protecting advanced technologies have narrowed their focus to five key sectors: artificial intelligence, quantum computing, biotechnology, semiconductors and autonomous systems.

Why it matters: China and Russia are employing a variety of legal and illegal methods to undermine and overtake U.S. dominance in these critical industries, officials warned in a new paper. Their success will determine "whether America remains the world’s leading superpower or is eclipsed by strategic competitors."