Former MA Gov. Patrick Says He Won’t Run For President In 2020

Dec 6, 2018

Credit Jim Levulis / WAMC

Former Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts, citing the "cruelty of our elections process" and the effect it would have on his loved ones, has announced that he will not run for president.

Patrick, in a statement Thursday, said: "After a lot of conversation, reflection and prayer, I've decided that a 2020 campaign for president is not for me."

Patrick's statement had been expected. Several sources had confirmed Wednesday that he would not run.

The 62-year-old Patrick served two terms as governor, from 2007 to 2015, was assistant attorney general for civil rights in the Clinton administration, and since leaving the governor's office has been a managing director for Bain Capital.

He traveled across the country in support of Democratic candidates in the recent midterm elections, raising his national profile.

Patrick's full statement, posted on his Facebook page Thursday, is below.

"After a lot of conversation, reflection and prayer, I’ve decided that a 2020 campaign for president is not for me. I’ve been overwhelmed by advice and encouragement from people from all over the country, known and unknown. Humbled, in fact. But knowing that the cruelty of our elections process would ultimately splash back on people whom Diane and I love, but who hadn’t signed up for the journey, was more than I could ask. The past few months on the road in support of congressional candidates — from Texas to Mississippi to New Jersey to Georgia to North and South Carolina to Florida to Illinois — have been affirming. People across America are coming off the sidelines and getting engaged, taking responsibility for their own civic and political future. That’s exciting and important. I hope we keep giving them positive reasons to do so. The people I met don’t fit in a box. They are much more than some oversimplified “voter demographic,” with all the presumptions that go with that. They are living unique lives, in search, in not so many words, of economic security and social justice and meaning. And they sense that most of the time most of the political establishment sees only a cartoon version of them or overlooks them altogether. Democrats have a clear chance not just to win their votes but to win their respect and earn their help by showing up everywhere, engaging everyone, and making our case. Our case for opportunity, equality and fair play has its roots in the founding aspirations of America. And it turns out those values still matter to people. That is our civic faith, and we’ll have to take care to keep it now — because what’s at stake today is not just the case for our party or the qualifications of a given candidate, but the character of the country. America feels more ready than usual for big answers to our big challenges. That’s an exciting moment that I hope we don’t miss. I hope to help in whatever way I can. It just won’t be as a candidate for president. To all those who helped Diane and me think this through, thank you. We are grateful."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.