Tom Steyer, the California billionaire and champion of impeaching president Trump, will not run for president of the United States. Speaking from Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday, Steyer revealed: “I am not running for president at this time.” He insisted he will instead be “dedicating 100 percent of my time, effort and resources to one cause: Working for Mr. Trump’s impeachment and removal from office.”
For the 2020 election, the 61-year-old Steyer had laid out a five-plank platform he calls the “Five Rights.” Styer has been touring Iowa, home of the first presidential caucus, to promote the agenda, which includes free public education, from pre-K through college, and universal health care. “If you have these 5 rights,” he’s said, “you have the protections you need to be truly free.” They are:
- The right to an equal vote in a fair democracy
- The right to clean air and clean water
- The right to learn, from pre-K through college and advanced skills training
- The right to earn a living wage
- The right to health
Steyer has built one of the most impressive and powerful liberal grassroots organizations in the country, which could prove an invaluable asset to whomever stands against Trump in 2020. His petition, Need to Impeach, has amassed 6.7 million people calling for Trump’s ouster, many of them young, and a significant portion new to politics. The petition’s parent organization, Next Gen America, registered more than 250,000 voters and knocked on more than 1 million doors during the 2018 campaign. Steyer has claimed credit for electing Jacky Rosen to the senate from Nevada.
Steyer, who made his fortune as the head of San Francisco-based Farallon Capital before dedicating himself to liberal causes, in particular fighting climate change, invested $120 million in the midterms. He indicated that he intends to spend another $40 million on his impeachment campaign.
“The simple truth is, Mr. Trump has repeatedly abused the powers of the presidency,” Steyer said. “And the Constitution demands accountability.”
Rolling Stone has spoken to Steyer regularly over the past year, interviewing with him about his disagreements with Nancy Pelosi on impeachment and checking in with him after he was targeted by the MAGA Bomber.
This story will be updated as more details emerge.