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Governor Jay Inslee: What to know

Who is Jay Inslee? Here are a few facts you should know about the Washington governor.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced Wednesday night he's "withdrawing" from the 2020 presidential race, as the Democrat said "it's become clear" he didn't have a shot at winning the primary.

Inslee announced his decision on MSNBC, saying it's become clear that he won't win. He has kept the option of running for a third term as governor open throughout his presidential campaign but didn't immediately say what his political plans were.

Inslee, 68, became the third Democrat to end his presidential bid after U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell of California pulled out of the primary last month followed by former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper last week.

INSLEE CALLS TRUMP A 'WHITE NATIONALIST' AT DEBATE

While Inslee had qualified for the first two presidential debates this summer, he struggled to gain traction in the crowded Democratic field and was falling short of the requirements needed to appear on two high-profile stages next month: the third DNC debate in Houston and a CNN town hall focused on climate change, Inslee's key issue.

He had recently hit one of the markers — 130,000 unique donors. But he had yet to reach 2 percent in any poll and would have needed to hit that level of support in four qualifying polls.

At the July Democratic primary debate, Inslee declared to applause, “We can no longer allow a white nationalist to be in the White House.”

Inslee is a former congressman and served as Democratic Governors Association chairman in 2018, when the party flipped seven Republican-held gubernatorial seats. He kicked off his campaign in March in Seattle, standing in front of a blue-and-green campaign logo with an arc of the Earth, declaring climate change the nation's most pressing issue.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee signs the state operating budget, Tuesday, May 21, 2019, at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash. Inslee also signed a “sanctuary state” measure on Wednesday. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee signs the state operating budget, Tuesday, May 21, 2019, at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash. Inslee also signed a “sanctuary state” measure on Wednesday. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Inslee was a champion for the clean energy industry in Congress and wrote a book on the topic. And he's pushed for state policies to curb greenhouse gas emissions blamed for global warming.

On the day he announced his presidential bid, the state Senate passed a key piece of his legislative climate agenda, a measure that seeks to eliminate fossil fuels like natural gas and coal from the state's electricity supply by 2045.

The measure, later passed by the House and signed by Inslee in May, made Washington the fourth in the nation to establish a mandate to provide carbon-free electricity by a targeted date. A few additional states have enacted legislation related to clean energy requirements since May, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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