Presidential hopeful and Montana Gov. Steve Bullock received the endorsement of his home state senator and fellow Democrat Jon Tester on Sunday.
“We need someone in the White House who wants to get dark money out of our campaigns and create opportunity in rural America. Someone with a track record of delivering jobs and healthcare, who has proven they can bridge the partisan divide,” Tester said in a statement released by his office. “That’s why I am endorsing my friend, Governor Steve Bullock, to be our next President.”
Like Bullock, Tester has managed to win statewide elections in a conservative, predominantly rural state. In his statement endorsing Bullock, Tester said the 2020 candidate could put “politics aside” and bring the country together.
Bullock, who announced the Tester endorsement Sunday during an interview on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” has struggled to break out of the crowded Democratic primary field since declaring his candidacy last month, barely registering in primary and national polling. Asked about his lackluster performance so far, the Montana governor pointed to his relatively recent entry into the race because of his work with the state’s legislature, which adjourned just last month.
“I’ve led with a legislature that’s about 60% Republican, but we’ve been able to get progressive things done like getting dark money out of our elections and getting health care for 10% of my population, record investments in education,” Bullock said on “Face the Nation.”
Bullock is in danger of not making it to the stage for the first Democratic presidential primary debate later this month. On Thursday, he accused the Democratic National Committee of deliberately excluding him by refusing to count a poll that would have been the third showing him with 1% support ― one of the requirements of making it to the debate stage. The DNC has said it told Bullock months ago that the poll would not count due to its format.
“I hope that the DNC will play fair by everyone in the field because that’s their role is to facilitate the voters’ options. Not to try to limit it,” Bullock said Sunday.