Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand dropped out of the presidential race Wednesday, abruptly ending a campaign that collapsed after low polling and major fundraising struggles.
“I know this isn’t the result that we wanted,” the 52-year-old New York senator said in an online video in which she didn’t endorse any other 2020 Democratic White House hopeful. “But it’s important to know when it’s not your time.”
Her decision came when she failed to qualify for a debate coming next month in Houston by not hitting 2% in at least four approved public opinion polls while securing 130,000 unique donors. She spent millions on online and TV ads to garner campaign contributions from people contributing as little as $1.
On the eve of Wednesday’s qualifying deadline, Gillibrand met with her family and decided that if a pair of polls set to be released the following morning didn’t help her meet the polling threshold, she’d drop out.
Both polls showed her at zero percent.
Even before Gillibrand’s announcement, the crowded Democrat presidential field of more than two dozen candidates had already begun to narrow. U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell of California left the 2020 race in July, followed by former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton of Massachusetts earlier this month.