What You Need to Know: Eric Swalwell

Rep. Eric Swalwell first Democrat to end 2020 presidential run

California Rep. Eric Swalwell announced Monday he's ending his 2020 presidential bid and dropping out of the crowded Democratic field less than three months after kicking off his campaign.

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Swalwell made the announcement during a press conference at his campaign headquarters in Castro Valley.

"We have to be honest about our own candidacy's viability," the congressman said.

"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, to believe that it will be the next generation whose leadership will solve climate chaos, bring cures in our lifetimes for healthcare, address the student loan debt crisis and make sure we say enough is enough," he said

Citing an unidentified source, the Los Angeles Times reported Swalwell will instead turn his attention to winning a fifth term in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Swalwell announced his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination in April during an appearance on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert." He kicked off his campaign with a rally that month in Dublin, California, the city in which he grew up.

Since announcing his candidacy, Swalwell has struggled to gain traction in the crowded field of Democratic presidential hopefuls. The Times reported he's frequently appeared toward the bottom of polls for the 2020 presidential race. Last week, he canceled five Fourth of July events he'd planned in New Hampshire, fueling speculation that he planned to leave the race, the East Bay Citizen reported.

The four-term congressman and former Dublin city councilman was first elected to represent California’s 15th District in the House in 2012. He was reelected to the seat in 2014, 2016 and 2018.

In June, Swalwell told The Hill he could run to hold on to his seat in the House if his presidential campaign failed to gain momentum.

"I'm running for president right now," Swalwell said, emphasizing that he had months before having to determine whether to join the House race. “We need this field to start shrinking so candidates can distinguish themselves. I hope to be part of the field as it shrinks. If I don’t, I’m going to be realistic about my options.”

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