Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has decided to end his White House campaign, paving the way for former Vice President Joe Biden to become the party’s 2020 nominee.
“Today I am suspending my campaign. But while the campaign ends, the struggle for justice continues on,” Sanders announced in a tweet on Wednesday, April 8.
Today I am suspending my campaign. But while the campaign ends, the struggle for justice continues on. https://t.co/MYc7kt2b16
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) April 8, 2020
In a special message to his supporters through social media shortly before noon, the Vermont senator said, “The path toward victory is virtually impossible,” citing Biden’s lead of over 300 convention delegates.
“I have concluded that this battle for the Democratic nomination will not be successful … I do not make this decision lightly,” he declared, calling his decision a “difficult and painful” one.
“While this campaign is coming to an end, our movement is not,” he said.
The 78-year-old senator also congratulated his Democratic rival, saying Biden is “a very decent man whom I will work with to move our progressive ideas forward.”
Sanders dropped out his presidential race after he Sanders won New Hampshire and Nevada caucuses in February, but then suffered a string of major primary defeats.
According to Federal Election Commission records, the Sanders campaign had raised $182 million by the end of February, with roughly $19 million cash on hand, while the Biden campaign raised $88 million and had $12 million cash on hand.
Sanders’s exit will be a boost for Biden, leaving the former vice president as a likely Democrat nominee.
In a response, Biden praised Sanders’s decision, saying “he’s a good man, a great leader, and one of the most powerful voices for change in our country.”
“I know how hard a decision this was for him to make—and how hard it is for the millions of his supporters—especially younger voters—who have been inspired and energized and brought into politics by the progressive agenda he has championed,” Biden said in a statement.
“Bernie has done something rare in politics,” Biden added, mentioning the issues that Sanders and his supporters have given life to, such as income inequality, universal health care, climate change, free college, relieving students from the crushing debt of student loans.
In a message to Bernie’s supporters, Biden said, “I need to earn your votes. And I know that might take time. But I want you to know that I see you, I hear you, and I understand the urgency of this moment. I hope you’ll join us. You’re more than welcome: You’re needed.”
In his reaction, President Donald Trump said Sanders ended his campaign like the Democrats and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) expected, and called on the senator’s supporters to “come to the Republican Party.”
“Bernie Sanders is OUT! Thank you to Elizabeth Warren. If not for her, Bernie would have won almost every state on Super Tuesday! This ended just like the Democrats & the DNC wanted, same as the Crooked Hillary fiasco. The Bernie people should come to the Republican Party, TRADE!” the president wrote in a tweet.