Eric Swalwell announces on July 8, 2019 that he has ended his bid for presidency

Doug Sovern/KCBS Radio

Swalwell Abandons Long-Shot Quest For Presidency

Billionaire Tom Steyer Revives Potential Campaign

Doug Sovern
July 08, 2019 - 4:53 pm

DUBLIN — Rep. Eric Swalwell became the first Democrat to withdraw from the party's crowded field of candidates seeking the 2020 presidential nomination on Monday when he announced at his campaign headquarters that he'd instead focus on retaining his seat in Congress. 

As Swalwell backed out, Bay Area billionaire Tom Steyer, who's been calling for President Trump's removal and toyed with running for the White House, appears poised to jump into the race. 

"Today ends our presidential campaign, but it is the beginning of an opportunity in Congress with a new perspective shaped by the lives that have touched mine and our campaign throughout these last three months, to bring that promise of America to all Americans," Swalwell said. 

The announcement from Swalwell showed him following through on remarks he made to KCBS Radio six weeks ago. At the time, he said that if he did not gain traction after the first debates, he would drop out and instead seek a fifth term in Congress.

“This is not a vanity tour,” he told KCBS Radio then.

Meanwhile, a source close to billionaire Tom Steyer, the San Francisco hedge fund entrepreneur turned environmental advocate and impeachment zealot, told KCBS Radio that Steyer had a change of heart and will join the crowded democratic presidential field, confirming a development that was first reported by Politico. 

Steyer has never held public office. He gave a not very well-received, lackluster speech last month at the California Democratic convention in San Francisco, but now Steyer is telling associates he will indeed seek the presidency.

Related: With Swalwell Running For President, Other Democrats Eye His Coveted Seat In House