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Beto O'Rourke Is Out, and Trump Weighs In

'Our campaign has been about seeing clearly, speaking honestly and acting decisively'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 1, 2019 6:20 PM CDT
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In this Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2019 file photo, Democratic presidential candidate and former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke listens during a gun safety forum in Las Vegas.   (AP Photo/John Locher, File)
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(Newser) – Beto O'Rourke, the former Texas congressman, announced Friday that he was ending his Democratic presidential campaign, which failed to recapture the enthusiasm, interest, and fundraising prowess of his 2018 Senate race. In an online post, O'Rourke said, "My service to the country will not be as a candidate or as the nominee." He planned to address supporters later Friday at an event in Iowa, reports the AP. "Our campaign has been about seeing clearly, speaking honestly and acting decisively in the best interests of America. Though it is difficult to accept, it is clear to me now that this campaign does not have the means to move forward successfully," he wrote on Medium. "Acknowledging this now is in the best interests of those in the campaign; it is in the best interests of this party as we seek to unify around a nominee; and it is in the best interests of the country."

After quickly pulling in $9.4 million during his first two weeks in the race, O'Rourke's financial situation deteriorated. By the end of June, he was spending more than his campaign was taking in. By the end of September, he had just $3.2 million cash on hand while spending double that over the previous three months, campaign finance records show. Perhaps more significantly, the small-dollar contributions that fueled his Senate bid and the early days of his presidential campaign slowed to a $1.9 million trickle. O'Rourke did not endorse another Democrat for the nomination, saying the country will be well served by any of the other candidates, "and I'm going to be proud to support whoever that nominee is." President Trump quickly weighed in, saying in a tweet: "Oh no, Beto just dropped out of race for President despite him saying he was "born for this." I don't think so!"

(Read more Beto O'Rourke stories.)

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