Sen. Bernie Sanders ends presidential campaign


Caitlin Yamada/ Iowa State Daily

Sen. Bernie Sanders spoke about student loan debt, climate, women’s issues and more at his rally on Jan. 25 at the Ames City Auditorium.

Jake Webster

Sen. Bernie Sanders is suspending his presidential campaign, ending his campaign for the White House after launching onto the national scene from relative obscurity five years ago with his 2016 bid.

“If I believed we had a feasible path to the nomination, I would certainly continue the campaign,” Sanders said in a livestream address. “But it’s just not there.”

The Vermont senator’s withdrawal from the race leaves former Vice President Joe as the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee to take on President Donald Trump in November’s general election.

“I congratulate Joe Biden, a very decent man, who I will work with to move our progressive ideas forward,” Sanders said in the address.

Sanders briefly gained frontrunner status in the race after the controversy-marred Iowa caucuses saw him finish in a near-tie with former Mayor Pete Buttigieg and subsequent victories in the New Hampshire primary and Nevada caucuses. Biden regained the lead in the field of candidates following a landslide victory in the South Carolina primary at the end of February and won a near-mathematically insurmountable delegate lead following victories in the Super Tuesday contests at the beginning of March.

The Vermont independent’s 2020 bid underperformed his 2016 results once the race became a two-person competition. Sanders lost by wide margins to Biden in states he won four years ago including Michigan, Idaho and Washington.

The end of the Democratic primary heralds the beginning of the general election. Trump and Biden have previewed that race in recent weeks with Biden criticizing the president’s response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and Trump taking to Twitter to attack Biden.

Biden enters the general election fight with a national polling lead over the incumbent, as the fallout continues from the health and economic crises. In the RealClearPolitics polling average of a general election matchup between Trump and Biden, the former vice president leads by 6.1 percent.