Former Mass Governor Deval Patrick Launches 2020 Bid To Be Dems' New Centrist Champion

Ending days of media speculation, former Mass Governor Deval Patrick said Thursday that he will run for president, the first of what could become a wave of new candidates now that the departures of Beto O'Rourke and several bottom-tier candidates have freed up some space in what is still an extremely crowded primary.

Adhering to custom, Patrick made the announcement in a video released on social media.

In the video, Patrick, who is black, described growing up poor on the South Side of Chicago, and being the first in his family to go to college and then law school. He also said that while he "respects the character" of his fellow candidates, this race is about "the character of the country" - which sounds like an awkward attempt to snub Trump without naming him explicitly.

"I admire and respect the candidates in the Democratic field," he said in the video, but if the character of the candidates is an issue in every election, this time is about the character of the country."

"In a spirit of profound gratitude for all the country has given to me and with the determination to build a better, more sustainable, more inclusive American dream for the next generation, I am today announcing my candidacy for president of the United States."

Patrick's announcement comes just in time to meet the Friday deadline to register for the New Hampshire primary, a state where Patrick hopes he can be competitive after serving as governor of neighboring Massachusetts.

According to the Hill, the success that leftist candidates like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have had in tarnishing Joe Biden's front-runner status (something they've had a lot of help with from Joe himself). South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg is running steady in fourth, but the lack of a clear centrist champion has encouraged others - including former NYC Mayor and billionaire mogul Mike Bloomberg - to consider getting into the race.

Patrick ruled out a presidential run last year, but has now apparently changed his mind.

Historically, candidates who enter late don't last long, and Patrick will only have a few weeks to make his message resonate with Americans, the Hill said.

But regardless of how well he performs, it will be interesting to see how Patrick's work at Private Equity firm Bain Capital, where he has worked for the past few years, will impact his chances, as one twitter user pointed out.