From Left: Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenloooper, U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., and U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore/Marc Nozell (Moulton photo)

Updated (originally published on 8/23/19)

The Democratic presidential field narrows to 20 candidates as Washington Governor Jay Inslee, former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, U.S. Representative Seth Moulton, D-Mass., ended their presidential campaigns last week. U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., announced that she was dropping out of the presidential race on Wednesday afternoon.

Inslee, who made climate change the centerpiece of his campaign, announced he would drop out of the race to pursue a third term as governor for Washington.

He made his announcement on Rachel Maddow’s show on MSNBC.

Inslee failed to secure a spot for the third Democratic debate hosted by ABC News at Texas Southern University scheduled for September 12 and 13, 2019 if more than ten candidates qualify. The criteria for that debate was to have at least 2 percent support in three qualifying polls and provide evidence of at least 130,000 individual donations from a minimum of 400 different donors in at least 20 states.

So far only ten candidates have qualified prior to the upcoming selection next week on August 29, 2019. They are:

  • Former Vice President Joe Biden
  • New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker
  • South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg
  • Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro
  • California Sen. Kamala Harris
  • Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar
  • Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke
  • Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders
  • Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren
  • Entrepreneur Andrew Yang

Hickenlooper announced on Thursday morning that he would end his presidential campaign and run to challenge U.S. Senator Cory Gardner, R-Colo., instead.

Hickenlooper also has not qualified for the upcoming ABC News Debate failing to register in the latest Democratic primary polls. An Emerson Poll of a potential head to head general election match-up in the Colorado Senate race shows the former two-term governor with a 13-point lead over the incumbent Republican.

Moulton also did not qualify for the ABC News debate. He wrote the following message for his supporters:

I ran for president to fight for our values—for who we are—and to beat Donald Trump. But I always promised that if I didn’t see a path to the nomination, I would end my campaign and focus my efforts on helping Democrats win across the board next November. Today is that day. 

Although this campaign is not ending the way we had hoped, I couldn’t be more proud of what we accomplished in just a few months. We ran on taking back patriotism from the Republican Party, and we drove the national conversation around foreign policy, mental health, gun reform, and national service.

 None of that would have been possible without my family, my team, and our amazing supporters. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. 

I often say that in the men and women I served with in Iraq, I saw the best of America in the worst of circumstances. Well, I saw the same thing in this campaign. I saw Americans from all backgrounds, all races, all religions, standing up and fighting for our values because they believe in our country—even when it lets them down. Perhaps especially when it lets them down. Because that is when our country needs us most. 

Running for president with you behind me has been one of the greatest honors of my life. But I’m focused on the future, and looking forward to what’s ahead. And most of all, I will be campaigning my ass off for whoever wins our nomination in 2020. 

Moulton said he would run for re-election in the U.S. House of Representatives and plans to relaunch his political action committee – Serve America – that focuses on veterans issues.

Gillibrand withdrew on Wednesday afternoon. She said that her failure to qualify for the upcoming presidential debate was fatal to her campaign.

“Today, I am ending my campaign for president. I am so proud of this team and all we’ve accomplished. But I think it’s important to know how you can best serve. To our supporters: Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. Now, let’s go beat Donald Trump and win back the Senate,” Gillibrand said on Twitter.

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