Tom Steyer Ends 2020 Presidential Campaign

Tom Steyer, the billionaire hedge fund investor and environmental activist who staked his campaign on a strong finish in South Carolina, suspended his presidential campaign on Saturday.

Steyer aggressively courted the black vote in the state, with a focus on racial and economic justice but had a disappointing finish. Former Vice President Joe Biden was projected to win the state.

“I said if I didn’t see a path to winning, that I’d suspend my campaign,” Steyer told supporters on Saturday. “And honestly, I can’t see a path where I can win the presidency.”

Steyer had spent more time in South Carolina than any other candidate and fielded the largest on-the-ground campaign staff.

He caused a stir in this state because of his extensive spending. He spent nearly $24 million ads there and waged an aggressive direct-mail campaign. Some of his spending, including the practice of hiring local lawmakers as paid staff, drew unease that he was buying the black vote.

Though Steyer made an aggressive play for South Carolina voters, he did not earn a single delegate in Iowa, New Hampshire or Nevada — the first three contests — and polls showed a daunting path ahead in the 14 states that vote on Super Tuesday.

Steyer entered the race in July, despite an earlier announcement that he wouldn’t seek the nomination and would instead focus on efforts to impeach President Trump.

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SOURCE: NPR, Juana Summers and Barbara Sprunt