Speaking to supporters in his hometown of South Bend, Indiana, Pete
Buttigieg stressed the values he said his campaign had hoped to promote.
He said: “And so we must recognize
that at this point in the race, the best way to keep faith with those goals and
ideals is to step aside and help bring our party and our nation together.
“So tonight I am making the
difficult decision to suspend my campaign for the presidency.”
Pete Buttigieg pledged he would do “everything in my power” to
ensure a Democratic win in November’s election.
He won the first event of the primary season, the caucuses in Iowa on February
3. But he failed to repeat that success and win the delegates needed to make
him the front- runner and later confirm his nomination. On February 29, he
finished a distant fourth in South Carolina.
Joe Biden praised Pete Buttigieg’s campaigning effort in a tweet.
Pete Buttigieg’s husband, Chasten,
also addressed crowds of supporters in South Bend, saying: “About a year and a half ago, my husband came home from work and
told me – well he asked me: ‘What do you think about running for president?’
And I laughed! Not at him, but at life.
“Life gave me some interesting experiences, on my way
to find Pete. After falling in love with Pete, Pete got me to believe in
myself… and I told Pete to run [for office] because I knew there were other
kids sitting out there in this country who needed to believe in themselves,
Pete Buttigieg’s only political
experience had been as the centrist mayor of the 306th largest city in the US,
South Bend, Indiana between 2012 and January this year.
Before then, he had served as a US
Navy intelligence officer and in the Afghan war.
Pete Buttigieg was the first
millennial to run for the White House, and would have been the youngest
president to take office had he won.
The son of a Maltese immigrant, he had long been rumored as a possible
candidate in the 2020 election. But after announcing his candidacy in April
last year, he was able to break through a crowded group to become one of the
most recognizable faces in the campaign.
In that time, Pete Buttigieg raised more than $82 million, according to the
Federal Election Commission, one of the highest totals of all the candidates.
Pete Buttigieg – pronounced Boot-Edge-Edge – came out as gay aged 33 and
married his husband Chasten in June 2018.
He also struggled to build support among African-American voters, a point
emphasized by his poor showing in South Carolina.
Pete Buttigieg’s record as mayor came under fire among minority voters – he had fired South Bend’s first African American police chief and was criticized over how he handled the case of a white police officer who shot dead a black man last year.
He then added that the Iowa
Democrats were “not the only party to blame”, and mentioned the
partners and vendors who were also involved.
The Iowa caucus is the important first step in choosing the challenger to
the incumbent president.
Primaries and caucuses are a string of nationwide state-by-state votes,
which culminate in the Democratic nominee being chosen at the party convention
Although Iowa awards only 41 of the
1,991 delegates required to become the Democratic White House nominee, the
state’s vote is usually considered the first clear indication of each
candidate’s standing within the race.
This year the Iowa Democratic Party
distributed a new app, called Shadow,
to precinct officials that was supposed to help them report results more
It was an issue with this app, which
the party said was a coding error that led to the delay in results and ultimate
chaos on February 3.
Pete Buttigieg declared victory for
himself that same day, before any of the results were released.
In the end, the results were finally released three days later than
By that time the chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) had
already weighed in, calling for a review of the vote totals.
The second vote that took place – the primary in New Hampshire on February
11 – was more clear-cut. Bernie Sanders came in first, with Pete Buttigieg
second and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar in third place.
Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren, previously considered frontrunners, came in fourth and fifth – each with zero delegates.
Pete Buttigieg and Bernie Sanders are taking
the lead in the Iowa caucuses, the first vote to choose the Democratic
candidate to run against President Donald Trump in November’s election.
The vote has been chaotic, beset by technical problems and delays in
According to Iowa’s Democratic Party, data from 71% of precincts showed Pete
Buttigieg on 26.8%, with Bernie Sanders on 25.2%.
Elizabeth Warren was third on 18.4% and Joe Biden fourth on 15.4%.
According to the other preliminary results released on February 4 from all
of Iowa’s 99 counties, Amy Klobuchar was on 12.6%, and Andrew Yang on 1%. Tom
Steyer and Tulsi Gabbard were on less than 1%.
However, the state party has still not declared a winner from February 3
vote. Democrats have blamed the delay on a coding error with an app being used
for the first time to report the votes.
Iowa was the first contest in a string of nationwide state-by-state votes,
known as primaries and caucuses, that will culminate in the crowning of a
Democratic nominee at the party convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in July.
Eleven candidates remain in a Democratic field that has already been
whittled down from more than two dozen.
The results represent the share of delegates needed to clinch the party
nomination under America’s quirky political system. Iowa awards only 41 of the
1,991 delegates required to become the Democratic White House nominee.
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