Sherrod Brown Plans Trip to Early 2020 States With ‘Dignity of Work’ Tour

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) isn’t running for president — at least, not yet.

But Brown is hinting at his 2020 intentions with the announcement of a trip to a number of early primary states for a “Dignity of Work” tour.

Brown made the announcement during a Tuesday night interview on MSNBC’s “All In with Chris Hayes,” rattling off a number of states he plans to visit:

“I’m announcing tonight on this show that I’m planning a dignity of work listening tour, kicking off in Cleveland, and then the first of February going to Iowa with my wife, Connie Schultz — going to Iowa, and New Hampshire, and Nevada, and South Carolina…”

Of course, the list of states sounds just like where one would go right about now if they were testing the waters on a presidential run, but Brown explained that his intention is simply to hear from Americans across the country about what the dignity of work means to them.

Brown’s ability to stay afloat as a Democrat in a state that has grown increasingly red — and went to Donald Trump by over 8 percentage points in 2016 — would certainly make him an interesting contender in what is shaping up to be a large field of Democratic hopefuls. Despite Ohio’s shift to the right, Brown was able to secure re-election to the Senate in November, fending off a challenge from former Rep. Jim Renacci by nearly 7 points.

Watch the interview below, via MSNBC:

In explaining his upcoming tour on Tuesday night, Brown said he hoped that the information he gleans from voters can help “encourage my colleagues running for president that this should be the narrative.”

But host Chris Hayes still pressed Brown on his intentions, noting that Brown’s tour just so happens to hit his home state and the first four primary states.

“Well, Connie and I have not made that decision,” Brown said of his own possible presidential ambitions. “We will make that decision in the weeks ahead.”

Brown offered a vision of broad appeal to both the “working” base and the “progressive” base, “without compromise on women’s rights, and civil rights, and gay rights, and worker’s rights,” as the way to win.

The Ohio senator also weighed in on news that a Republican firm had begun conducting opposition research on his wife.

“Well, I think it says a number of things. First, it says how great Connie is,” he replied, praising his wife and her work. “How accomplished she is, how smart she is, how well she works social media, what a terrific writer she is — people all over the country know that.

“The other thing is they take my potential candidacy seriously,” he added.