Holder on Why He Might Run for President in 2020: 'I Think I've Got the Guts'

February 27, 2018

Former Obama administration Attorney General Eric Holder said Tuesday that his accomplishments, ideas, and guts are enough to consider a run for president.

Holder has expressed openness to running for president, and earlier this month he told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow that he will make a decision about running for higher office by the end of 2018. The Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart asked the former attorney general what his wife thought of the idea, to which Holder said she hadn't "been convinced yet" that it would the right decision for their family.

Capehart then asked Holder why he might run for president.

"Why do you feel at least a flicker in the belly to at least think about running for president?" Capehart asked.

"Because I care a great deal about this country. I’ve spent the vast majority of my professional life in public service. I think I've got ideas that I hope would resonate with the American people," Holder said. "I think I've got the guts to potentially do the things that I think the next president would have to do."

Holder said this point in American history calls for decisive and broad-ranging action, even if it does not come from him.

"This is not a time to be half-stepping," he said. "This is a time to deal with a changing America, with an America that will be wounded by the experience that we are presently going through. It doesn't mean that ultimately I’m going to do it. I’m certainly going to be involved in what happens in 2020."

Holder has been active in Democratic political efforts during Donald Trump’s presidency. He chairs the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, which aims to flip congressional Republican seats in 2018 in order to affect redistricting in 2020.

Holder finished his answer by saying he cares about America and wants to bend its moral arc towards justice, quoting Martin Luther King Jr.

"I care about the notion of fairness, of equality," he said. "I think this country is a great one, and we have a pretty consistent arc of progress. We’re a better nation now than we were 50 years ago."

"Dr. King said ‘The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.’ But that only happens when people put their hands on that arc and pull it towards justice," Holder said.