Kirsten Gillibrand exits presidential race
August 29, 2019
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand dropped out of the presidential race Wednesday evening, pledging to help the eventual Democratic nominee beat President Donald Trump next year.
The New York Democrat, who ran a distinctly feminist campaign, failed to meet the Democratic National Committee’s criteria for the committee’s September presidential debate. A statement released by her campaign cited her lack of “access to the debate” stage as a reason she decided to end her run.
“We wanted to win this race,” Gillibrand said in a video posted on her Twitter account. “But it’s important to know when it’s not your time, and to know how you can best serve your community and country.”
Gillibrand championed women and families in her bid, becoming the first candidate to call for a pro-abortion rights litmus test for federal judicial nominations. She held rallies in Georgia and Missouri, after Republican state lawmakers passed a string of rigid anti-abortion laws. She was also one of the earliest and most vocal critics of President Donald Trump on the campaign trail, formally launching her campaign, after a brief exploratory period, at the foot of one of the president’s hotels in Manhattan.
But Gillibrand struggled to stand out of the sprawling, diverse Democratic primary field, which included five other women. Like other candidates languishing at single or near zero digits in national polling, Gillibrand was not able to pull off a breakthrough moment. Instead, she received her first and only 2-percent poll earlier this month. She needed to get at least four such polls and accrue 130,000 donors to make the September debate stage.