Rep. Tulsi Gabbard on Sunday reiterated that she does not plan to mount a third-party presidential bid if she does not secure the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.
“I have said numerous times that I will not run as a third-party candidate,” the Hawaii Democrat and 2020 presidential hopeful said on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.”
She said the “rumor” has come from political opponents trying to undermine broad support “from Democrats, Republicans, independents, libertarians, who are saying, hey, look, we want to come and vote for you in the Democratic primary because of the unifying message and leadership that I will bring to this country.”
Ms. Gabbard had previously said she wouldn’t mount a third-party bid, but a recent feud with Hillary Clinton and a subsequent piece in the Wall Street Journal has renewed the speculation.
She said on Sunday that Mrs. Clinton and her “proxies and minions” are trying to smear her character and undermine her campaign.
“It’s a message to all Americans, even you, those watching at home, that if you dissent, if you disagree, if you speak truth to power and challenge the establishment view, especially as it relates to foreign policy, then you too will be smeared and attacked,” she said.
Mrs. Clinton, the former secretary of state and 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, had suggested in a recent podcast interview that Ms. Gabbard was being groomed to run third-party to boost President Trump’s reelection chances.