Published: Sun, August 18, 2019

John Hickenlooper to drop out of presidential race; mulling run for Senate

John Hickenlooper to drop out of presidential race; mulling run for Senate

He became the second Democrat to end a presidential bid after Rep. Eric Swalwell pulled out of the primary last month.

Hickenlooper has struggled to garner significant support in the crowded presidential primary field of Democratic candidates since launching his campaign earlier this year. Republican Sen. Cory Gardner, up for reelection in 2020, is considered one of the most vulnerable senators in the country because of Colorado's shift to the left.

Hickenlooper is the second Democrat to bow-out of the 2020 race.

A self-described "pragmatic-progressive", Hickenlooper struggled to gain momentum while pushing a centrist campaign message focused on restoring the middle class.

Pressure to end his campaign increased as it appeared increasingly unlikely Mr. Hickenlooper would meet the required thresholds for the next round of TV debates.

Hickenlooper is also a former mayor of Denver and a successful beer brewer.

"Today, I'm ending my campaign for president", he said in a videotaped statement.

Photo DAVOS/SWITZERLAND, 28JAN12 - John W. Hickenlooper, Governor of Colorado, USA is captured during the session "People Power" at the Annual Meeting 2012 of the World Economic Forum at the congress center in Davos, Switzerland, January 28, 2012.

Hickenlooper had pitched his long experience leading a state with a sizable Republican minority, warning Democrats against straying too far leftward in the fight to dethrone President Donald Trump next year.

Former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper ended his campaign for the Democratic nomination for President Thursday morning.

"They remind me how much is at stake for our country and our state", he said. The two-term Colorado governor was a moderate voice in the primary, making his opposition to democratic socialism- including Vermont Sen.

It stated a couple weeks ago when a Denver political consultant tied to Hickenlooper caused a stir when he bought several web domains that could be utilized for a Senate bid.

"People want to know what comes next for me".

"Democrats must say loudly and clearly that we are not socialists", Hickenlooper said at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. earlier in the spring. "Just want to make that clear - governors are closer to the people".

"I think I'd be a hard candidate [to beat] as a senator", he said. Gardner told CPR on Tuesday when asked about the possibility of Hickenlooper entering the race. The candidates still have a few months to file for a Senate race (the deadline for Colorado is as late as the third Tuesday in March). A July poll of likely Colorado voters from a Republican-aligned firm found Trump with a 39% approval rating in the state and concluded he trails a generic Democratic general election opponent by 12 percentage points.

On the debate stage in July, Hickenlooper spoke less than any other candidate on the first night of that round, but he tried to position himself as a foil to the progressive front-runners, especially Sens.

Bennet, who also faces a steep climb to make the upcoming debates, said he'd stay in the race even if he doesn't qualify for the showdowns. Hickenlooper responded by saying he was not interested in running for Senate, something that mirrors what he said in February when he said he wasn't "cut out" to be a Senator.

"This won't be a coronation", State Sen.

The push to recruit Democrats to run for the Senate took another blow this week when Stacey Abrams, whose national profile rose previous year when she narrowly lost a gubernatorial bid in Georgia, announced she would not run for the seat held by Republican Sen. While no announcement is imminent, the moderate executive may instead pursue a bid for the U.S. Senate.

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