The Big 10 with Jeff D'Alessio, March 17, 2019

The Big 10 with Jeff D'Alessio, March 17, 2019

Consider this your 365-day warning: On March 17, 2020, Illinois, Florida and Arizona will hold presidential primaries, becoming the 22nd, 23rd and 24th states to do so. What storylines should we be paying close attention to between now and then? That's the question we posed to this week's panel in part one of a two-Sunday miniseries.

Former DNC chair became first African-American woman to direct a major presidential campaign (2000, Al Gore)

"Democrats aren't divided on what they want — fair and honest elections, economic opportunity, human rights for all, universal health care, action on the environment and an America engaged with our allies to defend ourselves.

"The candidate to watch is the one who can best articulate how to achieve all that.

"The candidate to watch is the one who won't just be the next president, but will be the future president, with everything that 'future' implies."

aka 'The Architect' — George W. Bush's nickname for the strategist credited with the 43rd President winning two terms

"Keep an eye on the reaction of college-educated suburbanites to the unfolding presidential campaign.

"Traditionally Republican-leaning, they provided Democrats their winning numbers in the 2018 House races and could determine the outcome in a number of close battleground states in the 2020 presidential race."

Co-founded Politico in 2006, Axios in 2017

"To me, few things matter more than how voters — and ultimately, lawmakers — grapple with the unprecedented power of the big tech companies.

"Do we regulate them, do we break them up, or do we leave them alone?

"With artificial intelligence and machine learning upon us, our ability to tame — and make the best of — technologies that can change the world is an existential challenge."

A-list GOP political media consultant, 'Meet the Press' regular

"I will be watching the growth in real wages. That's what people will really be thinking about when they vote next November.

"I will also be watching to see if the Democratic party will evolve from all this silly uber-progressive self-indulgence at the start of their primary process toward a more pragmatic 'it's all about beating Donald Trump' viewpoint as the primaries really start next January."

Former chair, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights

"Immigration and refugee policy is an issue worth following.

"The west, including the United States, needs a comprehensive review to meet current needs. Court decisions inhibiting the implementation of current policies just exacerbate the polarization around the issue.

"Given demography, climate change, economic inequality and repressive and corrupt governments, migration will likely increase.

"Gun control is good, but it won't stop the violence. In Britain, knives are used."

Senior editor, Cook Political Report

"Among the current Democratic field, is there a candidate who can successfully bridge the divide between the progressive and more establishment wings of the party?

"That's the question."

1955 UI grad and presidential historian, won 1979 Bancroft Prize for his book on FDR

"I'm most intrigued by two questions: How did we get here or why would voters find someone with zero political experience worthy of being president?

"A second question is: What long-term effect will his administration have on the presidency?

"I will try to answer the first question in a book I am writing: 'How Did We Get Here? From TR to Donald Trump.'"

John McCain's national presidential campaign manager in 2007-08

"The story line I'm watching this election cycle is: Where will the suburban women go?

"Suburban women fueled the rise of the GOP in the post-Nixon era. Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and his son all benefited from a decisive GOP edge with those soccer moms. Even Candidate (Donald) Trump got his fair share of those voters against the first major party woman candidate for president.

"But in 2018, those suburban women voters opposed the Trump pitch that the midterm was all about him and voted decisively for the Democrats nationally and locally.

"What happens next with suburban women will decide the 2020 presidential election and most down-ticket races. It's too early to tell where they will land, but government shutdowns and investigations are not a good start.

"They have already voted once in mass against a great domestic economy. Will they do it again, potentially giving the White House, Senate and House of Representatives to the Democrats?

"Stay tuned."

Chicagoan's work history: Hillary Clinton campaign manager, Joe Biden campaign chief of staff, Barack Obama campaign senior adviser

"Women played a crucial role in the 2018 midterms, with more running and more actually winning elected office than ever before.

"But they also played a crucial role in engagement. They marched, they phoned their congressperson, they protested, they ran phone banks out of their kitchens, they knocked on doors. It was unprecedented.

"I am curious to see if that sort of engagement will result in a woman on the ticket in 2020 and ultimately in the Executive."

New York Times columnist wrote 'Too Big to Fail,' co-created Showtime's 'Billions'

"I see the issue of inequality and questions about capitalism versus socialism being the biggest force in the 2020 election.

"We're already starting to see the beginning of that debate play out."