What to Know
- Mayor de Blasio dropped his 2020 presidential bid Friday, announcing on "Morning Joe" he felt he had contributed all he could to the primary
- The decision came about two weeks after he hinted he may pull the plug, saying he was disappointed not to have qualified for Sept. debate
- De Blasio officially announced he was running for president in May as a Democrat, defying deep voter opposition at home
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has ended his 2020 bid for president.
The Democratic mayor made the announcement Friday on "Morning Joe," saying "I feel like I've contributed all I can to this primary election."
The decision came about two weeks after he hinted he may pull the plug, saying he was disappointed to have not made the cut for the September Democratic debate. At the time, he had said if he missed the October cut as well he would reevaluate his bid. The deadline for the October debate is Oct. 1.
In an op-ed for NBC News Friday, the mayor wrote the campaign "has been a profound experience for me."
"I saw America in full — not as it appears on Twitter and cable news, where we’re constantly shown a country hamstrung by our differences and unable to tackle the problems we face," he wrote. "We have more in common than we realize — and more and more of us across the country are overcoming our divisions and standing up for working people."
Now, the mayor says he plans to "redouble my efforts to improve the quality of life of everyday New Yorkers." And he urged the Democratic party to return to its roots, warning, "If we do not, we will lose in 2020."
President Trump quickly took to Twitter with a swipe at the mayor, writing, "Oh no, really big political news, perhaps the biggest story in years!"
"Part time Mayor of New York City, @BilldeBlasio, who was polling at a solid ZERO but had tremendous room for growth, has shocking dropped out of the Presidential race. NYC is devastated, he’s coming home!" Trump tweeted.
During a Friday press conference, de Blasio said that one of the things he took away while on the campaign trail was hope.
"I came away very hopeful from what I saw," he said. "Remember that what we need to do for New York City goes beyond what we can do just in the five boroughs. We need change in Washington."
He went on to say that he thought the 2020 election "can produce great results in terms of what New York City needs."
De Blasio also said he wished he had more resources and could have started his campaign earlier than he did, but "there were a lot of things I had to do here first."
De Blasio officially announced he was running for president in May as a Democrat, defying deep voter opposition at home to enter the crowded field with an unabashed message of progressivism.
"People want real change and they are going to demand it," he said Friday.
De Blasio launched a campaign website and made the announcement in a three-minute campaign video titled "Working People First."
"There's plenty of money in this world. There's plenty of money in this country. It's just in the wrong hands," De Blasio says in the video, which touts his accomplishments bringing universal pre-K, paid sick leave and a $15 minimum wage to the city. "I'm running for president because it's time we put working people first."
De Blasio referred to President Donald Trump as a "bully" and said he must be stopped.
Since the announcement of his presidential run, de Blasio has faced bouts of controversy, including during the August Democratic debate in Detroit on Aug. 1, where he was heckled over his handling of police officers in the Eric Garner case.
Who’s Running for President in 2020?
The race for the 2020 presidential election is underway, and the field of Democratic candidates is packed. Those who have announced presidential bids include a vice president, senators, House members and three mayors. As for the GOP, a single Republican has announced his bid to challenge President Donald Trump for the party nomination: former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, who ran for vice president (and lost) in 2016 on the Libertarian party ticket.
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Updated Nov. 20, 2019
Note: Incorrect information about Michael Bennet’s cancer diagnosis and titles for Joe Sestak and William Weld have been revised on July 29, 2019, 3:17 p.m. ET.
Credit: Jo Bruni, Emma Barnett, Asher Klein, Dan Macht, Kelly Zegers / NBC; Photos: Getty Images