Not satisfied with the size of the already massive Democratic field, Montana governor Steve Bullock announced his presidential bid in a video posted on Tuesday.
In a state President Trump won by 20 points, Bullock, who was first elected governor in 2012, managed to get reelected in 2016. Prior to becoming governor, Bullock served as Montana’s attorney general.
With “A Fair Shot for Everyone” as his campaign slogan, Bullock seems to be focusing his campaign on fairness. During his announcement, Bullock said, “We need to…defeat the corrupt system that lets campaign money drown out the people’s voice, so we can finally make good on the promise of a fair shot for everyone.”
Bullock’s campaign, already an underdog, faces an even greater uphill battle given its late start. He will have much less time to gather individual donors than other minor campaigns, like that of Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Ind., and former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke. Bullock will also have to make up lost time when it comes to accumulating a large enough vote share to meet the Democratic National Committee’s new requirements for debate participation.
Some Democrats are encouraging Bullock to abandon his presidential bid and trade it for one for another high government office: the Senate. While the national focus seems entirely aimed at the Democrats’ effort to win back the White House, they are also eager to gain control of the Senate. Bullock is seen as a potential key player in the effort. While the Montana Senate race would be unwinnable for practically any other Democrats, the party sees Steve Bullock as the perfect candidate to give current GOP senator Steve Daines a run for his money. Were Bullock to defeat Daines – in a race that could be dubbed the “Battle of the Steves” – Democrats would be one seat closer to a majority.
However, it seems that for the moment, this Democratic dream scenario will remain just that. Bullock has repeatedly rejected the idea of a Senate run, even after multiple meetings with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. According to Politico, those who know Bullock said he doesn’t want to be one senator out of a hundred. While this sentiment may change as the campaign goes on, for now Bullock is still one candidate in twenty two.