South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D) said on Monday that he will not seek another term in the mayor’s office, a move that could portend a possible 2020 bid for the Democratic presidential nomination.
“The responsibility of leading an administration also includes the responsibility to recognize when it is time to get ready to move on,” Buttigieg said in a news conference at his office.
“I know now that the time has come to prepare the city for new leadership again.”
Buttigieg’s announcement came just three days before he is expected to speak at a holiday party for the liberal group Progress Iowa in Des Moines — an engagement seen as significant because of Iowa’s status as the first state to hold caucuses in presidential election years.
Buttigieg became the youngest person to serve as the mayor of a city with a population of more than 100,000 when he took office in 2012 at the age of 29. He won a second term in 2015.
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But speculation has long swirled that Buttigieg, now 36, planned to seek higher office.
He ran unsuccessfully for Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairman in 2017. But that bid helped him build a national profile and raised his stature among national Democrats, whose support would be crucial in a potential presidential run.
Still, if he mounts a presidential campaign, Buttigieg is likely to face a crowded primary field, including a large number of possible opponents with sweeping national profiles.
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