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Bullock ends presidential campaign, not running for Senate in Montana

FILE — Steve Bullock, governor of Montana, has dropped out of the Democratic presidential race. (Eric Thayer/The New York Times)
December 2, 2019 10:15 am

CQ-Roll Call (TNS) — Montana Gov. Steve Bullock on Monday dropped out of the Democratic presidential race and his campaign said he won’t run for the state’s Senate seat next year.

Bullock failed to convince Democratic voters that he could beat President Donald Trump in red states. He polled at 0% in both CNN and Quinnipiac polls released last week.

In a statement released early Monday, Bullock said that “it has become clear that in this moment, I won’t be able to break through to the top tier of this still-crowded field of candidates.”

Bullock’s exit leaves 16 candidates in the Democratic race. Former Pennsylvania Rep. Joe Sestak ended his campaign on Sunday.

Bullock’s campaign said in a statement that he won’t enter the state’s Senate race against incumbent Republican Steve Daines.

“While he plans to work hard to elect Democrats in the state and across the country in 2020, it will be in his capacity as a Governor and a senior voice in the Democratic Party — not as a candidate for U.S. Senate,” Galia Slayen, Bullock campaign communications director, said in a statement to multiple media outlets.

Democrat Cora Neumann joined the race in October and is working with some well-respected consultants, but the state is rated Solid Republican by Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales. Two other Democrats are also running for Daines’ seat.

Trump won the state by 20.4 percentage points in 2016.