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Beto O’Rourke Drops Bid For President, Calls For Unity Behind Eventual Nominee

Former U.S. Congressman Beto O’Rourke has to pull his name out of contention to win the Democratic Party’s nomination to run for president in 2020.

Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

O’Rourke gained national attention when he came within a few percentage points of winning the state of Texas in a Senate contest between himself and Republican Sen. Ted Cruz.

His decision to quit the race came midweek, sources with knowledge on the subject told the New York Times. O’Rourke’s campaign was struggling financially, and would have had to cut positions within the team in order to promote other outreach opportunities, including funding campaign commercials.

The Texas Democrat announced the end to his campaign on a Medium post, published on Friday.

“Though it is difficult to accept, it is clear to me now that this campaign does not have the means to move forward successfully. My service to the country will not be as a candidate or as the nominee,” O’Rourke wrote. “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.”

Within his Medium post, O’Rourke made clear that voters must reject President Donald Trump as the leader of this country come 2020. He suggested his campaign helped highlight some of the worst aspects of the Trump administration that needed confrontation.

“At this moment of truth for our country, we laid bare the cost and consequence of Donald Trump: the rise in hate crimes, the terror attack in El Paso, the perversion of the Constitution, the diminished standing of the United States around the world,” O’Rourke said in his statement. “But we also made clear the common responsibility to confront him, to hold him accountable and ensure that he does not serve another term in office.”

That responsibility, O’Rourke said, belongs to all Americans, not just Democrats or Republicans.

O’Rourke also stated that he was committed to helping whoever became the eventual nominee of the Democratic Party. “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,” he said.

O’Rourke said it was necessary for his supporters to back up the eventual nominee, who he expects will become president, to “help them heal a wounded country and bring us together in meeting the greatest set of challenges we have ever known.”



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