Montana Governor Steve Bullock is full steam ahead with his presidential campaign. That’s despite the fact he’s far off from meeting the benchmarks required to participate in the third Democratic debate.
Democratic presidential contenders have two more weeks to meet thresholds set by the Democratic National Committee. If they want to participate in the third debate this September, they need at least 2% support in four qualifying polls and 130,000 unique donors.
This Monday he’ll appear at a presidential forum for Native American concerns, along with candidates Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, among others. He said any time in front of voters is a good opportunity, but that he still has his eyes on Houston, the location of the third debate in mid-September.
“Hopefully I’ll make the next debate stage,” Governor Bullock said. “But even if I don’t, you know, the elections are ultimately decided by people talking to people, and that’s what I’ll continue to do.”
He’s also taking what others might consider a bad sign in stride.
Former Governor of Colorado John Hickenlooper withdrew on Thursday. When asked how he was taking that news, Bullock responded, “I haven’t really given it...” He pauses then adds, “Look, I know Governor Hickenlooper well from serving in the National Governors Association. He’s certainly a good person and I wish him well.”
In a video posted to Youtube, Hickenlooper revealed he’s considering a Senate bid. But despite pleas for Bullock to do the same, he has a packed campaign schedule next week. He’ll be in New Hampshire this weekend before flying to Iowa to appear at the Native American presidential forum Monday.
Olivia Reingold is Yellowstone Public Radio’s Report for America corps member.