Rep. Eric Swalwell, California Democrat, pledged to run with a female vice president candidate if he wins the Democratic presidential nomination, admitting what many have long suspected by declaring, “I’m a white man.”
“SPOILER ALERT: I’m a white man,” he tweeted late Tuesday. “I know where I can’t speak to someone else’s experience, and I pledge to (1) Pass the mic (2) Ask a woman to serve as VP.”
He linked to a clip from his Tuesday appearance with MSNBC’s Joy Reid, telling her, “I don’t think anyone’s identity should hold them back, but I think the next president should see all races, all identities.”
“I’ve pledged that I would ask a woman to serve as vice president,” he said. “I would put forward a diverse candidate, and I would put forward policies that would make sure that inherent bias that exists, or discrimination that exists in communities, would be eliminated.”
Mr. Swalwell’s announcement came as the white men seeking the Democratic presidential nomination wrestle with the implications of running against female and minority candidates in a party dominated by identity politics.
Polls show two straight white men — former Vice President Joseph R. Biden and Sen. Bernard Sanders — leading the packed field of prospective nominees despite their lack of diversity.
Another white guy, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, has also said he would prefer to choose a female vice president candidate if nominated, while Mr. Sanders told leftist media outlet The Young Turks he would consider someone “who is maybe not of the same gender that I am.”
Mr. Swalwell’s declaration of his obvious whiteness met with plenty of ribbing.
Mediaite’s Tommy Christopher said the congressman “stunned the political world by coming out as a white man on Twitter, making him just the ninth openly white male candidate to enter the fray.”
Tweeted Stephen Miller: “I’m a white man who recognizes I have privilege. That is why I will ask a woman to be my subservient number 2 position.”
The four-term congressman from California’s East Bay announced his long-shot presidential bid April 8 on CBS’s “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.”