Pete Buttigieg has announced that he is dropping out of the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, joining Tom Steyer who dropped out yesterday.
Pete Buttigieg has ended his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. Two campaign sources confirmed the news to the Guardian and said the former candidate was on his way back to South Bend, his home town in Indiana, where he would speak later on Sunday night.
At first on Sunday, which Buttigieg began with breakfast with former president Jimmy Carter in Plains, Georgia, it did not seem he would take the final step.
“Every day we are in this campaign,” he told NBC News, “is a day that we have reached the conclusion that pushing forward is the best thing we can do for the country and for the party.”
But later in the day he was out.
CNN reported that the former mayor was “unwilling to be [the] reason Sanders is able to get ‘insurmountable’ delegate lead on Super Tuesday”. It was also reported that Buttigieg was not planning to endorse another candidate on Sunday.
It appears that other factors in his decision were poor internal polling numbers for Super Tuesday, he had spent most of his money and had little left, and his support among minorities was dismal.
I cannot say that I am displeased. I had taken an increasing dislike to what I perceived as his phoniness and attempts to discredit the progressive proposals that were being put forward by Bernie Sanders using arguments and talking points that were favored by Republicans and Fox News.
The Democratic party establishment will no doubt welcome this news because although Buttigieg was supportive of their center-right agenda, they also want a single candidate to represent that ideology and Joe Biden’s strong showing in South Carolina meant that Buttigieg had no chance of replacing him as their standard bearer.
Buttigieg hates the progressive policies that Sanders has been pushing and seems to think that his supporters will now flock to Biden. But this race is so fluid and allegiances so unpredictable that it is not clear where they will end up.