Steve Bullock, the two-term governor of Montana, announced that he’s launching a presidential campaign.
The early morning announcement makes the 53-year-old governor the 22nd person, and the third current or former governor, to join the packed field of Democrats seeking the party’s nomination to challenge President Donald Trump.
During his time as governor, Bullock implemented stricter campaign finance laws and expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Bullock has made his fight to strengthen campaign finances regulations in Montana a key part of his campaign launch.
“Today we see evidence of a corrupt system all across America: A government that serves campaign money not the people,” Bullock said in his announcement video of the state of the country following the Supreme Court's Citizen's United ruling.
Bullock won a second term as governor in Montana in 2016 while Trump won the state over Hillary Clinton by over 20% — Bullock is the only presidential candidate who has won a statewide election in a state that Trump won. Bullock has touted his experience of governing in a red state and has pushed the Democratic Party on its need to reach out to rural voters ahead of the 2020 election.
"As the Democratic governor of a state that Trump won by 20 points I don’t have the luxury of just talking to people that agree with me," Bullock said in the video. "I was able to bring Democrats and Republicans together to fight dark money and pass one of the strongest campaign finance laws in the country."
Some centrist Democrats have pointed to Bullock as a potential counterweight to the progressive shift of the party, even as he spoke at the 2018 Netroots convention, a gathering for progressive grassroots activists.
In 2017, Bullock launched the Big Sky Values PAC, which has raised over $1 million dollars to fund his travel across the country and donated to congressional candidates in Iowa, New Hampshire, Arkansas, and Montana during last year's midterm elections.
Bullock will kickoff his campaign Tuesday at Helena High School in Montana before going on a three-day tour of Iowa.