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Howard Schultz thinks he's the right billionaire for America

Everyone else seems to think he's out of touch.

by Joe LoCascio
Apr 23 2019, 8:19pm

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Howard Schultz had a vision in the '80s: to bring Italian-style coffeehouses to America. He bought a little Seattle chain called Starbucks, turned the company into an empire, and made more than $3 billion for himself.

Now, he's facing skepticism for another adventure: running for president — as an Independent. Officially, he’s still only exploring, but he’s hired a bunch of political consultants. It's a presidential campaign in all but name.

In an era where populism and socialism are animating the two major political parties, Schultz is pitching himself as a centrist who'll bring everyone together to cut the debt. “My view of the current problems that we're facing and the challenges that we have and the opportunity, is to remind people about the center,” Schultz said.

So far, he’s been swarmed on Twitter, heckled at his own book launch in New York City, and parodied as an out-of-touch billionaire convinced of his own brilliance. And yet, he trudges on.

As Schultz launched the next part of his listening tour, VICE News sat down with him on his not-quite-a-campaign-bus. He still seems pretty convinced that he's the billionaire America needs. And he definitely doesn’t like being interrupted.

This segment originally aired April 11, 2019, on VICE News Tonight on HBO.