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Former Democratic presidential hopeful toys with potential 2020 bid

2016 Democratic presidential hopeful and former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (right) tested the waters for a potential 2020 presidential bid with a recent Iowa poll. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, a 2016 presidential hopeful, began to test the waters of a potential 2020 bid as he recently polled Democratic Iowa caucus-goers.

Politico reported Wednesday that O'Malley's leadership PAC, O'Say Can You See, commissioned a Public Policy Polling survey earlier this month.

The poll asked voters who they would choose if the election was today and pitted O'Malley against nine other potential Democratic candidates: New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, former Housing Secretary Julian Castro, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, California Sen. Kamala Harris, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz.

O'Malley received 18 percent of those polled. The answer "not sure" received 32 percent.

"Gov. O’Malley spent a lot of time in Iowa during the campaign and made a very favorable impression on Iowa Democrats. We wanted to see if the conversations he started with Iowans resonated and are glad to learn that they did," Dave Hamrick, O’Malley’s 2016 campaign manager,  told Politico.

The poll — conducted by phone and online — showed O'Malley with a 47 percent favorable and 12 percent unfavorable rating among Iowa Democrats. The poll also showed 41 percent of Iowa Democrats were not certain of their feelings about the former governor.

In comparison, Booker received a 40 percent favorable and 11 percent unfavorable rating among Democrats. Cuomo received a 35 percent favorable and 19 percent unfavorable rating; Klobuchar received a 30 percent favorable and 9 percent unfavorable rating.

Politco reported that O'Malley had the highest favorable ratings.

O'Malley ended his 2016 bid on Iowa caucus night after not faring well against eventual Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

O'Malley hasn't exactly been coy about a potential 2020 bid; the former Baltimore mayor has taken multiple trips to Iowa already this year, campaigned for multiple Democrats in special elections and teased a run in an interview with NBC News in January.

"As for the question of whether I might run for president in 2020, I just might," O'Malley said then.

But as Politico reported, some big name Democrats thought to be potential candidates in 2020 are missing from O'Malley's poll, including Sanders, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown.

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