Billionaire activist Tom Steyer won’t run for president, he announces in Des Moines

Source: By Brianne Pfannenstiel, Des Mo9nes Register • Posted: Thursday, January 10, 2019

Tom Steyer, a California billionaire and activist, announced Wednesday in Des Moines that he will not run for president.

“I am not running for president at this time,” he said. “Instead I’m strengthening my commitment to Need to Impeach.”

That organization is focused on the effort to impeach Republican President Donald Trump, who Steyer called “reckless, lawless and dangerous.”

Steyer has had a presence in Iowa for several months, holding events and hiring staff through his organizations NextGen America and Need to Impeach.

NextGen, which has an Iowa branch, was focused on climate change from 2014 to 2016 and shifted to a broader progressive agenda in 2017, making a major push for youth voter turnout in the 2018 election.

A former hedge fund manager, Steyer funneled about $120 million into the 2018 midterms, which included airing television ads in Iowa.

Despite his presence here — both in person and on TV — Steyer’s name recognition is still low compared to many other potential 2020 candidates.

In a December Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll, one percent of voters said he was their first or second choice, and more than 61 percent of likely Democratic caucusgoers said they were “not sure” if they had a favorable view of him.