Zuckerberg hires top Clinton pollster amid rumors of presidential run

04 August, 2017, 00:20 | Author: Ora Austin
  • President Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg has hired a top Democratic pollster, further fueling speculation that the Facebook CEO could be considering trading in a corner office for one of the oval variety, Politico reports.

Joel Benenson and his company Benenson Strategy Group will be responsible for conducting research for the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the couple's philanthropic efforts.

Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, have pledged to donate 99 percent of their net worth - which now sits at $45 billion - to charity.

The couple previously hired David Plouffe, Obama's campaign manager for his 2008 presidential run, to serve as the philanthropy's president of policy and advocacy.

Earlier this year, Zuckerberg made yet another politically connected hiring: Amy Dudley, who worked as communications advisor for Virginia Democratic Sen. President George W. Bush's 2004 campaign manager Ken Mehlman is a board member as well, notes Newsmax.

If the speculations are true, Zuckerberg would join a laundry list of high-profile people, including celebrities Dwayne Johnson, Kid Rock, and Ron Perlman, who despite having no political experience, have a desire to run for the White House.

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He also toured a Ford assembly plant outside Detroit, a key city won by President Trump during the 2016 election.

Even before his is-he-or-isn't-he road trip, Zuckerberg had shown an interest in politics and social issues.

"Some of you have asked if this challenge means I'm running for public office", Zuckerberg wrote on his Facebook page last May.

There have always been speculations that Zuckerberg might be getting ready for a political debut.

What's more, the Benenson Strategy Group works for a series of nonprofits in addition to the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, including the American Civil Liberties Union, the AARP, and Lady Gaga's Born This Way Foundation.

However, while these are all areas that will require a degree of political navigation, the hire is sure to feed into those persistent rumors of Zuckerberg considering a presidential run.

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