Both John Edwards and Rudy Giuliani will be exiting the presidential race today. We knew last night that Giuliani was quitting, but Mr. Edwards comes as a bit of a surprise. Of the two, he is the one I am sorry to see leave. I thought he would stick it out at least through Super Tuesday.
DENVER (AP) – Democrat John Edwards is exiting the presidential race Wednesday, ending a scrappy underdog bid in which he steered his rivals toward progressive ideals while grappling with family hardship that roused voters’ sympathies, The Associated Press has learned.
The two-time White House candidate notified a close circle of senior advisers that he planned to make the announcement at a 1 p.m. EST event in New Orleans that had been billed as a speech on poverty, according to two aides. The decision came after Edwards lost the four states to hold nominating contests so far to rivals who stole the spotlight from the beginning – Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama.
The former North Carolina senator will not immediately endorse either candidate in what is now a two-person race for the Democratic nomination, said one adviser, who spoke on condition of anonymity in advance of the announcement. Clinton said Wednesday that Edwards called her to inform her about his decision.[..]
Edwards waged a spirited top-tier campaign against the two better-funded rivals, even as he dealt with the stunning blow of his wife’s recurring cancer diagnosis. In a dramatic news conference last March, the couple announced that the breast cancer that she thought she had beaten had returned, but they would continue the campaign.
Their decision sparked a debate about family duty and public service. But Elizabeth Edwards remained a forceful advocate for her husband, and she was often surrounded at campaign events by well-wishers and emotional survivors cheering her on.
Edwards planned to announce his campaign was ending with his wife and three children at his side. Then he planned to work with Habitat for Humanity at the volunteer-fueled rebuilding project Musicians’ Village, the adviser said.
With that, Edwards’ campaign will end the way it began 13 months ago – with the candidate pitching in to rebuild lives in a city still ravaged by Hurricane Katrina. Edwards embraced New Orleans as a glaring symbol of what he described as a Washington that didn’t hear the cries of the downtrodden.
This second story comes as no surprise whatsoever. Rudy Giuliani was considered the frontrunner for the Republican nomination until he started campaigning and people got to know him. The more they saw him, the less they liked him.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – Rudy Giuliani told supporters Wednesday he’s abandoning his bid for president and backing Republican rival and longtime friend John McCain.
“I spoke with Rudy Giuliani this morning and he confirmed that he is dropping out of the race and will endorse Senator John McCain for president,” New York Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno said in a statement.
Once the Republican presidential front-runner, Giuliani suffered a debilitating defeat in Tuesday’s Florida primary.
The former mayor finished a distant third to the winner, McCain, and close second-place finisher Mitt Romney. After the results, Republican officials had said Giuliani would endorse McCain on Wednesday in California.