Saying “It’s clearly not my time,” Mayor Bill de Blasio pulled the plug on his quixotic bid for the 2020 Democratic presidential primary race after failing to qualify for the last debate and never seeing his national poll numbers climb higher than 1 percent.
The 58-year-old mayor of America’s largest city kicked off his long-shot campaign on Liberty Island four months ago but it never gained traction in a crowded field of 20 candidates.
“I feel I’ve contributed all I can to this primary election,” de Blasio said on MSNBC Friday. “So I’m going to end my presidential campaign, continue my work as mayor of New York City, and I’m going to keep speaking up for working people and for a Democratic Party that stands for working people.”
He did not endorse any of the remaining candidates, but said he would support the eventual Democratic nominee energetically.
“We have a chance to get it right in 2020,” de Blasio said. “Whoever our nominee is, let’s make sure we’re talking to the hearts of the working people.”
Soon after he announced he was dropping out, de Blasio was ridiculed in a tweet from President Donald Trump, who has mocked de Blasio’s campaign and mayoralty.
“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 [sic] dropped out of the Presidential race,” Trump said on Twitter. “NYC is devastated, he’s coming home!”
Hizzoner had run his campaign based on his accomplishments in running New York City for the last six years.
“Yeah, look, I feel very good about offering a vision of change to this country, largely based on what we did here in New York,” de Blasio told “The Brian Lehrer Show.” “And I have to tell you, out there in states around the country, there was a lot of appreciation for things like Pre-K for All and, you know, guaranteeing health care for folks who do not have insurance and paid sick days — a lot of things we’ve done here really resonated with people I’ve talked to and focusing on the changes we need going forward.”
During a press conference at City Hall, de Blasio said he had no regrets about his failed White House run.
“I feel very good about the message,” he said. “I feel that people want progressive change. They want to focus on working people. The message resonated really well.”
But too few people across the nation were listening.
“We were watching the polling to see if anything was moving, and it just wasn’t moving,” he said.