- "Our campaign has been about seeing clearly, speaking honestly and acting decisively in the best interests of America," O'Rourke said.
- O’Rourke never managed to break the ceiling of 10% support in the polls, according to data from Real Clear Politics.
- O'Rourke's departure leaves 17 candidates remaining for the Democratic nomination.
Former Congressman “Beto” O’Rourke (D-TX), who had been aspiring to become the Democratic Party’s candidate for next year’s US presidential elections, announced Friday that he had officially quit the race. O’Rourke has apparently failed by far, to emerge among the political party’s favorites, and barely had 3% support in the opinion polls.
“Our campaign has been about seeing clearly, speaking honestly and acting decisively in the best interests of America,” the 47-year-old candidate tweeted, fewer than 100 days before the first major meeting of the primaries, in the Iowa Caucuses. “Though it is difficult to accept, it is clear to me now that this campaign does not have the means to move forward successfully,” O’Rourke wrote in a statement. “I decided to run for President because I believed that I could help bring a divided country together in common cause to confront the greatest set of challenges we’ve ever faced,” he adds.
President Trump, in a quick rejoinder, mocked O’Rourke on Twitter. “Oh no, Beto just dropped out of the race for president despite him saying he was ‘born for this.’ I don’t think so!”
O’Rourke never managed to break the ceiling of 10% support in the polls, according to data from Real Clear Politics, a website that averages the results of the candidates in the main polls. The Democrat achieved a peak of 9.5% support in early April, with the momentum of the news of his candidacy. But since then, it was progressively falling in the polls, until touching 2%.
The race for the Democratic nomination began with 22 candidates. With O’Rourke’s departure, there are 17. Only three usually exceed double-digits in the polls. According to the RCP average, former Vice President Joe Biden leads with 26.7%, followed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), with 21.3%. Both candidates— the former more moderate and the latter more progressive— have been leading an interesting rivalry for weeks. The trends tend to favor Warren, at the expense of Biden.
They are followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), an independent and self-identified “democratic socialist,” at 16.8%; South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, another moderate, with 7.7%; and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), with 4.7%. A long list of candidates follow who do not exceed 3%.
“We will work to ensure that the Democratic nominee is successful in defeating Donald Trump in 2020. I can tell you firsthand from having the chance to know the candidates, we will be well served by any one of them, and I’m going to be proud to support whoever that nominee is,” concludes O’Rourke in his farewell letter. He did not offer clues about his most preferred candidate.