Former US vice president Mike Pence has dropped his bid for the Republican presidential nomination amid struggles to raise money and gain momentum in the polls.
Mr Pence, whose campaign never took off, told attendees at the Republican Jewish Coalition’s conference in Las Vegas that “this is not my time”.
“After much prayer and deliberation, I have decided to suspend my campaign for president, effective immediately,” he said.
“I will never leave the fight for conservative values and I will never stop fighting to elect principled Republican leaders to every office in the land, so help me God.”
Mr Pence becomes the first major candidate to leave a race dominated by his former boss Donald Trump, who turned on his vice president after losing the 2020 election to Joe Biden.
Their relationship deteriorated after Mr Trump became convinced Mr Pence somehow had the power to overturn the results, which is not something a vice president could do.
As Mr Pence refused to act on the scheme, he drew Mr Trump’s fury and was cast by the former president’s supporters as a traitor.
Over the course of his campaign, Mr Pence failed to attract enough anti-Trump voters from the party to sustain a candidacy that languished in the low single digits in opinion polls.
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