De Blasio launches presidential campaign

New York City Mayor Bill de BlasioBill de BlasioBloomberg compared civil libertarians, teachers union to NRA 'extremists' in 2013: report De Blasio endorses Sanders for president While Klobuchar surges, Warren flounders MORE (D) launched his presidential campaign on Thursday, joining a crowded field of Democratic contenders.

“Donald Trump must be stopped,” he said in a video announcing the launch of his campaign. “I’ve beaten him before and I’ll do it again.”

De Blasio is the 24th candidate to jump into the Democratic primary race and faces a challenging path to winning the nomination. More established progressive rivals such as Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBloomberg campaign: Primary is two-way race with Sanders Warren: Bloomberg making debate will show how other candidates handle 'an egomaniac billionaire' HuffPost reporter: Sanders could win plurality of delegates but lose nomination MORE (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren: Bloomberg making debate will show how other candidates handle 'an egomaniac billionaire' Klobuchar campaign gets first super PAC HuffPost reporter: Sanders could win plurality of delegates but lose nomination MORE (D-Mass.) have already been campaigning — and raising money — for months.

The New York mayor barely shows up in most polls and faces opposition back in his home city to his presidential run. A survey from Quinnipiac University Poll released last month showed 76 percent of the city's residents think he should not run for president. 

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De Blasio has been telegraphing a presidential run for months and has already made trips to crucial early primary states Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada.

He argues the progressive policies he's championed in New York, including an expansion of health care and free prekindergarten, can work on a national scale.  

"There's plenty of money in this world, there's plenty of money in this country, it's just in the wrong hands," he said in the campaign video.

After his announcement, de Blasio appeared on ABC's "Good Morning America," where he ripped into President TrumpDonald John TrumpCensus Bureau spends millions on ad campaign to mitigate fears on excluded citizenship question Bloomberg campaign: Primary is two-way race with Sanders Democratic senator meets with Iranian foreign minister MORE

“I call him Con Don. Every New Yorker knows he’s a con artist. We know his tricks. We know his playbook,” de Blasio said. “I know how to take him on — I’ve been watching him for decades. He’s trying to convince working Americans he’s on their side. It’s been a lie from day one.”

Trump swiftly hit back, saying de Blasio was a "JOKE."

“The Dems are getting another beauty to join their group. Bill de Blasio of NYC, considered the worst mayor in the U.S., will supposedly be making an announcement for president today. He is a JOKE, but if you like high taxes & crime, he’s your man. NYC HATES HIM!” Trump tweeted. 

Trump is a frequent target for the New York mayor, who on Monday held a news conference in Trump Tower, where he promoted new regulations curbing energy use by buildings in the city.

At the briefing, de Blasio said the Trump Organization could face fines of around $2 million per year starting in 2030 if its buildings do not reduce their carbon emissions.

De Blasio was heckled by Trump supporters during his appearance and then engaged in a heated exchange over Twitter with Eric TrumpEric Frederick TrumpHouse Democrats question Secret Service on payments to Trump properties Trump hotels charge Secret Service up to 0 per night while protecting him: report Beach Boys's Brian Wilson asks fans to boycott concert at hunting event featuring Donald Trump Jr. MORE, the president's son, who attacked the mayor's leadership of the city.

“Bill de Blasio is a liberal extremist who wants the government to control everything from your health care to what you eat," Republican National Committee spokesman Michael Ahrens said in a statement shortly after de Blasio launched his campaign. "Americans can rest assured that he won't win, but unfortunately his socialist policies fit right in with the rest of his comrades in the race.”

De Blasio's late entry to the race will present a series of challenges, at a time when even once-rising stars such as former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeKrystal Ball: Voters are coming to their own judgements about who is electable Warren campaign to host series of events in Texas Democrat attacks Trump's rhetoric, policies in Spanish-language State of the Union response MORE (D-Texas) are struggling to emerge from the crowded Democratic pack. 

The New York mayor could also initially struggle to land a spot on the primary debate due to kick off late next month.

To qualify for the 12 scheduled Democratic primary debates, candidates must receive at least 1 percent support in at least three separate polls recognized by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) or receive campaign contributions from at least 65,000 unique donors.

The DNC has said that it will prioritize candidates who meet both thresholds if more than 20 contenders qualify for the debates. 

Updated at 9:47 a.m.

Read more from The Hill:

De Blasio blasts Trump as he launches 2020 bid: 'Every New Yorker knows he's a con artist'

Trump rips de Blasio 2020 bid: 'He is a JOKE'

WHIP LIST: Who's in and out in the 2020 race