Inslee for America
text of email received August 21, 2019 at 6:30 P.M (Pacific Time)


As a close ally in a noble cause, I want to share a tough decision with you:

I know you agree that our mission to defeat climate change must continue to be central to our national discussion -- and must be the top priority for our next president. But I've concluded that my role in that effort will not be as a candidate to be the next president of the United States.

On Monday, our campaign hit one of two critical DNC thresholds to qualify for the next debate -- 130,000 grassroots donors. Reaching that challenging milestone proves the strong support that defeating climate change has amongst the grassroots of our party. However, at the same time we reached this threshold, it became clear that we would not meet the DNC's polling threshold, thus we would not have been invited to the fall debates. As a result, I don't believe we can compete for the attention and exposure needed to have a reasonable shot at the nomination.

As disappointing as this is, it is only right to recognize what we have accomplished and how far we have come together. As a governor, I came into this race with zero federal dollars, a small state-based email list, and limited name recognition, yet together we hit a target that half of the field has not hit -- the DNC's grassroots supporter metric.

The tremendous grassroots outpouring of 130,000 individual donors, from every state in the nation, is a testament to the movement that we've built together. Not only did we hit this high bar set by the DNC, but more importantly, together, we changed and shaped the entire national dialogue around climate change.

In recent presidential cycles, climate change got little attention from the candidates, the DNC, or the media. We vowed to change that in a big way and succeeded. Many of the campaigns started with little attention to climate, but since our campaign began, we've seen almost every serious candidate put out a climate plan; we've seen climate come up in both debates; and we now have two networks hosting nationally-televised climate forums in September. Most importantly, we have introduced a detailed and comprehensive policy blueprint for bold climate action and transformation to a clean energy economy. We will fight to ensure this gold standard of climate action is adopted and executed by our party and our next president.

What we accomplished together is a testament to the power of a small group of people of strong conviction committed to making a big difference. I am confident our work will resonate throughout the remaining months of the campaign.

Before I decided to run, Trudi and I -- my wife of nearly 47 years -- decided in our final days we wanted to be able to tell our three grandchildren, Brody, Zoe, and Chase, that we had done everything in our power to defeat this crisis.

It is because of you and hundreds of thousands of others in this movement that we can now say that we have enjoyed one of life's greatest gifts -- to make a difference on a big issue. After more than two decades in this fight against climate change, today I am more hopeful than ever that we can achieve a critical mass to solve this crisis, because of the incredible grassroots movement we're building together.

As we turn to the future, I will have more to say about what comes next for me in the days ahead. I can assure you that I will continue to lead, to demand bold action, and to do everything in my power to ensure the fight to defeat climate change stays at the top of the national agenda.
But for now, I want to once again thank everyone who helped in this effort. We have so much to be proud of. Make no mistake, we also have a lot more work to do.

So early to bed, early to rise, work like hell, and organize. Together we will continue the fight to defeat the climate crisis.

Very truly yours,


P.S. Trudi and I love you.

Inslee for America
For Immediate Release: Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Reaction: Presidential Candidates Praise Jay Inslee for Setting the Standard on Climate

Seattle, WA – Today, Governor Jay Inslee announced he is withdrawing from the 2020 presidential contest. Following his announcement, Inslee was met with praise and support from fellow 2020 presidential candidates who extolled his longstanding efforts, unwavering drive and his bold, ambitious policy proposals to defeat climate change.
Read what presidential candidates are saying below:
Vice President Joe Biden
@JayInslee brought an important voice to this race, arguing powerfully that climate change damages our health, national security & economy. The people of Washington are fortunate to have a Governor who fights to make their lives better now & to protect our planet for the future.
Senator Bernie Sanders
Congratulations to @JayInslee on his impactful campaign to bring the climate crisis to the forefront of the national conversation. There is no more important issue facing humanity. Together we will work to pass a Green New Deal and create millions of jobs.
Senator Elizabeth Warren
Thank you @JayInslee for fighting every day to make sure that climate change remains a primary focus of this election. Climate change is real and it's a crisis—and I will keep fighting alongside you to take bold action before it is too late.
Senator Kamala Harris
Few leaders have done more to shine a light on the climate crisis than @JayInslee. His voice will be missed in this primary but I know he will continue this fight.
Mayor Pete Buttigieg
We’re facing a climate crisis, and we must summon the courage to confront it before it’s too late. Thank you, Governor Inslee, for demanding that America meet the urgency of the moment.
Representative Tim Ryan
Jay, thank you for your contributions to change the conversation on climate. You led a great campaign, and I had so much fun with you on the trail. 
Even through you were a messy roommate, you’re a great friend, an incredible public servant and I’ll see you soon.
Fmr. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro
Thank you, @JayInslee, for your unwavering effort to save our planet. Your candidacy has kept our most pressing issue at the forefront of this race. 
Let me know when you’re up for that road trip!
Senator Cory Booker
Thank you @jayinslee for advancing the conversation about the urgent threat of climate change—our country is better for it. I know you will continue to be a powerful voice and move the needle on this issue. We'll be right there with you.
Tom Steyer
@JayInslee is a visionary leader and a friend. We all owe him a debt of gratitude for his wisdom, his commitment, and his basic goodness. Thank you. We will continue the fight against climate change.
Andrew Yang
@JayInslee is right that climate change is an existential threat to our way of life - I know he will continue to fight for the future in Washington and everywhere.  
Fmr. Representative Beto O’Rourke
Climate change is our greatest existential threat—and there are few people in the world as devoted to fighting it as @JayInslee. Thank you, Governor, for your leadership.
Senator Michael Bennet
@JayInslee, thank you for putting the fight against climate change — the most pressing issue of our time — front and center in this race. 
This existential threat cannot be ignored, and we all must carry the torch forward together to tackle it.
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
Climate change is the most grave threat we face, and we need leaders who match the challenge with the same urgency. @JayInslee has modeled that leadership, and I’m grateful for his role in this primary. Let’s keep up the fight for our planet.
Senator Amy Klobuchar
Governor @JayInslee made the climate crisis the centerpiece of his campaign and our nation is better because of it. Thank you for the bold ideas you brought to this race Governor.
Fmr. Representative John Delaney
Thank you, @JayInslee, for your incredible dedication to highlighting the threat of climate change. It was great getting to know you on the campaign trail, and your voice will be missed as the primary continues.
Fmr. Representative Joe Sestak
While I regret that the voice of Jay Inslee will now no longer be in the race for President, I am grateful that he put climate change front and center in the race. Thank you, @JayInslee: hope you will be in the next Administration leading America’s charge against climate change.
Mayor Bill de Blasio
Thanks to @JayInslee for fighting to keep climate change front and center. 
Though he’s moving on, we know this fight is far from over. Here’s to doing all it takes to preserve the planet for the next generation.


Jay Inslee for Washington
August 22, 2019


As you know, I join you in being rightfully proud of Washington state and what we have accomplished together. It has been a profound honor to represent our state on the national stage in the presidential race. I am grateful for the opportunity to have told the country about Washington state's successful model of progressive action we are building together.

We have provided the nation a road map for innovation, economic growth, and progressive action. And we're not done yet.

I want to continue to stand with you in opposing Donald Trump and rejecting his hurtful and divisive agenda, while strengthening and enhancing Washington state's role as a progressive beacon for the nation.

Which is why I'm announcing today my intention to run for a third term as Washington's governor.

I'm excited to do so -- because our great success as a state these last few years gives me confidence that we can continue to lead the nation in so many ways. Our multiple accomplishments have paved the way for much to come in the next term. We've created the first public option for health care in the nation, the highest increase in average public school teacher pay in the country, and the fastest growing economy in America. That's what we do in Washington --we're innovators, builders, creators -- and I am eager to build and expand on this unique record of progress and economic success for the people of our great state.

Together, we've built an economy that works for working people. Washington has raised the minimum wage to one of the highest in the nation, provided paid sick leave for every worker, and created a best-in-the-nation paid family leave program. We were the first state to protect net neutrality, and we have passed the most sweeping package of voting rights laws in the nation.
We have protected LGBTQI Americans from discrimination, provided affordable health care to over 800,000 Washingtonians through Obamacare, and passed reproductive parity protections for all women. We became the first state to sue against Trump's Muslim ban and passed historic investments in public schools, teacher pay, and infrastructure.

We're also leading the nation in tackling the climate crisis. Our efforts to protect Washington's clean air and water, invest in people's economic security, and stand up for the values of inclusivity and diversity have created thousands of clean energy jobs and made Washington state "the epicenter of resistance to Trump's agenda."

These progressive policies have propelled Washington's economy to be the best in the nation -- and the only state that has been ranked both the best place to work and the best place for business. Since I became governor in 2013, Washington state has ranked number one in both wage growth and GDP growth.

Washington's story shows the economic power of progressive action.

We've made incredible progress together, but there's much more to do. Make no mistake -- we will not be resting on our laurels. We fully intend for Washington's future to be every bit as dynamic, innovative, and inclusive as its past.

I've said it before, I'll say it again: Early to bed, early to rise, work like hell, and organize. Let's get to work building an even greater Washington together.

Very truly yours,