Former US Vice President Mike Pence is withdrawing his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination and ending his campaign for the White House after struggling to raise funds and gain support in the polls.
“It’s become clear to me that this is not my time,” Pence said at a Republican Jewish Federation rally in Las Vegas. “After much prayer and consideration, I have decided to suspend my presidential campaign as of today.”
“I always knew this was going to be an uphill battle, but I have no regrets,” Pence went on to tell the friendly crowd, who reacted with audible surprise to the announcement, giving him I received many standing ovations.
Pence will be the first major candidate to leave a race dominated by his former boss and rival Donald Trump.
Mr. Pence’s struggles highlight how Mr. Trump has transformed the party. The former vice president is typically seen as a formidable challenger in any primary, but Mr. Pence has struggled to find his base of support.
The decision, more than two months before the Iowa caucuses that will put his campaign on the line, saves Mr. Pence from accumulating more debt and prepares him for the third Republican primary debate in Miami on November 8th. He was spared an embarrassment that could have cost him his spot in the competition. .
But his departure is a huge blow to a politician who spent years waiting to be Trump’s most loyal lieutenant, although in his final days in office, Trump revealed that Pence had some kind of relationship with Pence. He believed they had the power to overturn the results of the 2020 election, only to be made scapegoats, and let them continue in office — a power Pence did not have.
a lot of critics
Mr. Pence averted a constitutional crisis by vetoing the plan, but it angered many Trump supporters and infuriated Mr. Trump.
Meanwhile, among Trump’s critics, Pence is seen as a success who defended the former president at every turn and repeatedly refused to criticize even Trump’s most indefensible actions. was.
The former Indiana governor and congressman has argued throughout his campaign that he is well known to voters but “not well known.” He tried to change things up with an active schedule, including frequent stops at diners and pizza lunch restaurants.
Pence was betting on Iowa, a state with a large white evangelical population and a long history of boosting religiously and socially conservative candidates.
Mr. Pence frequently campaigned with his wife, Karen, a Christian school teacher, emphasizing hard-line views on issues such as abortion, which he opposes even when pregnancy is impossible. He repeatedly called on his fellow candidates to support a national ban of at least 15 weeks and pushed for a ban on drugs used as an alternative to surgery.
He sought to confront his actions on January 6, 2021, repeatedly explaining to voters that he fulfilled his constitutional duty that day, knowing full well the political consequences. It was a strategy aimed at defusing the issue and gaining respect from Republicans who his aides believe Mr. Pence disagrees with Mr. Trump’s actions.
But Mr. Pence also had trouble gaining support in Iowa.
Despite his long-standing relationships with donors, he similarly had difficulty raising funds. Pence ended September with just $1.18 million in the bank and $621,000 in debt, according to his latest campaign report. His debt has ballooned in the weeks since then, and it will take years for Mr. Pence, who is not independently wealthy, to pay off more debt.