Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz wrote to Hillary Clinton aide Cheryl Mills in July 2015 to warn that the Clinton campaign’s message “feels stale” and lacks “transparency” and “truth,” according to an email released by Wikileaks on Tuesday.
Schultz’s impassioned warning message, which Mills forwarded to Clinton communications director Jennifer Palmieri, also urged the Clinton campaign: “Reboot the look of it all and the overriding message before its to [sic] late.”
At the time, there was speculation that Schultz, who has been critical of both parties, might run himself. Ultimately, Schultz endorsed Hillary Clinton, but not before delivering an impassioned warning to the Clinton campaign that it was out of touch.
Schultz’s advice included:
From the outside looking in, I see an old style start to the campaign that feels stale with very few signs of the kind of freshness and transparency that the American people (especially millennials) will need to trust and ultimately elect HRC as President.
She desperately needs the people on her side. And, although it’s early, the imprinting process has begun… And, I don’t like how it feels.
Her inner circle and the powers to be, need to reject the status quo, and understand how brands (and she is a brand) in the world we now live in are built. It requires a vision for the future that is steeped in truth and authenticity and builds an enduring emotional connection with the voters.
Substance absolutely matters, but so does the form it takes. The campaign feels “yesterday.” It’s too packaged and prescribed. The American people are longing for truth and someone to believe in.
Reboot the look of it all and the overriding message before its to late…
Schultz also worried that “the media is not on her side,” though he may have been referring to the media’s interest in Clinton’s Democratic rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). An analysis of campaign contributions in 2015 found Starbucks to be the most liberal coffee brand.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, is available from Regnery through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.