Billionaire Tom Steyer will not run for President in 2020, his spokeswoman tells CNN, ending months of speculation that the Democratic donor will escalate his efforts to defeat Trump by attempting to take him on at the ballot box.
"The impeachment question has reached an inflection point", Steyer wrote on Twitter. "Therefore, I will be dedicating 100% of my time, effort and resources to one cause, working for Mr. Trump's impeachment and removal from office". Steyer has said he was considering running for president.
Some of his money has gone to his Need to Impeach campaign against Trump.
Steyer added that Congress has a constitutional obligation "to end this shameful presidency" and he is asking that they put aside their political considerations.
Numerous indicators have shown that over the past year, many Democrats consider the impeachment issue more politically hard than Steyer has made it sound. Steyer says he will instead continue his campaign to push for impeachment hearings against the president.
Steyer, through outside groups like NextGen America and Need to Impeach, spent $120 million during the midterm elections with the goal of electing progressive candidates across the country, turning out young voters and garnering support for Trump's impeachment. And while Steyer's call for impeachment comes after House Democrats have taken the majority, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said that more facts are necessary before trying to impeach Trump and that unveiling the effort could be divisive.
In particular, Steyer said, he would focus on the constituents of Reps.
"What I took from that trip was, if you see something really wrong, if you see someone who is doing something consistently wrong, that is wicked, that is against the values of society, you have to fight it the first day, the second day, the third day", he said. "Mr. Trump has made division the centerpiece of his presidency". He does not govern. "He creates crises to remain in power and he will not stop spreading lies to the American people".
Steyer will discuss his "political plans for 2019 and beyond" at a news conference in Iowa, where he is hosting an event on access to education, according to a statement released on Tuesday. And he announced that he was considering running against Hillary Clinton in 2016 before declining to do so and supporting the eventual presidential nominee.
Steyer told CNN last week that he would run only if he believed he offered something new to the field of candidates.
Steyer's decision not to enter the race also leaves the deep-pocketed donor available to support one of as many as two dozen Democrats who are weighing 2020 presidential bids.