Democratic Massachusetts Congressman Seth Moulton has decided to end his presidential campaign.
Moulton, 40, who has barely registered in most polls, announced the end of his 2020 presidential bid in a speech to the Democratic National Committee on Friday afternoon. He said he has no immediate plans to endorse another candidate.
The congressman said he plans to seek re-election to his House seat. He also plans to relaunch Save America, his political action committee focused on veterans issues.
Moulton's campaign officially announced the end of his campaign in an email Friday morning that included a copy of his speech to the Democratic National Committee.
"I want to use this opportunity, with all of you here, to announce that I am ending my campaign for president," the remarks said. "Though this campaign is not ending the way we hoped, I am leaving this race knowing that we raised issues that are vitally important to the American people and our future."
Moulton, who entered the race in April, focused on mental health treatment after revealing his own struggles on that front as a combat veteran. His speech Friday touched on that part of his campaign.
"For the first time in my life, I talked publicly about dealing with post-traumatic stress from my four combat tours in Iraq... about how I sought help to deal with my post-traumatic stress — help that has made me a better public servant and a better husband and father. And our team put forward a plan that will end the stigma around mental health — the same stigma that kept me silent for so long, and that kept every presidential candidate before me from talking about mental health struggles themselves. That’s what this campaign has been about, and I’m so proud of what we’ve done."
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After hearing that Moulton dropped out of the race, some voters in the 6th Congressional District said Moulton may have gotten a little ahead of himself.
"I think he is trying to make some changes but it was a little too soon," voter Debbie Jackson said.
Other voters described Moulton as "ambitious".
"Maybe he can do better work locally," added voter Diane Ayott.
Boston University political historian and author Tom Whalen said he thinks Moulton may have gotten himself into trouble last year when he opposed Nancy Pelosi's re-election as Speaker of the United States House of Representatives.
"I think that’s the problem with Seth Moulton. He jumps the gun a little bit," Whalen said. "His ambitions... he wears them on his sleeve and that puts off a lot of people including the leadership in the House of Representatives."
With Moulton now hoping to be re-elected to Congress, Whalen said it might not be as easy as he thinks.
"He is going to be challenged from the left and also there are rumblings that maybe John Tierney — the man he pushed aside to win that Congressional — seat might be back in the mix. So he right now has to fight if he wants that seat," Whalen said.
Moulton joins Washington Gov. Jay Inslee in exiting the presidential race this week.