In a move that seemed somewhat inevitable for several weeks now, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders has announced that he is formally ending his presidential campaign. The move will leave former vice president Joe Biden as the presumptive Democratic nominee and clear the path forward for the Democratic Party to begin a battle against President Trump.
Sanders will be speaking to supporters via live stream around 11:45 am ET:
As NBC News reports, Sanders had some early wins in the 2020 campaign, but could not topple the Democratic establishment which quickly coalesced around Joe Biden after his big win in South Carolina:
The Vermont independent senator’s 2020 bid started off strong. He narrowly missed first place in Iowa before picking up wins in New Hampshire and Nevada. All the while, his campaign continued to rake in millions in small-dollar donations and pack rallies full of supporters as he ascended to national front-runner status amid a crowded Democratic field.
Running as a progressive insurgent against Hillary Clinton in 2016, Sanders popularized ideas like “Medicare for All.” In 2020, however, a number of candidates backed similar policies, and he faced another prominent progressive in Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., who was the first to propose canceling some student debt in April.
Outside of the COVID-19 pandemic causing mayhem in the primary, and the world at large, Sanders would have had a tough time catching Biden in the delegate count. Now that several states are postponing their primaries and/or switching to mail-only options, the enthusiasm and interest in the primary has softened due to the constant Coronavirus news coverage.
More to come as this story is developing.