Sen. Kamala Harris of California ended her quest for the Democratic presidential nomination Tuesday, citing a lack of financial resources.
“My campaign for president simply doesn’t have the financial resources we need to continue,” Harris said in a statement released by her campaign.
“I’m not a billionaire. I can’t fund my own campaign. And as the campaign has gone on, it’s become harder and harder to raise the money we need to compete.”
Decision Is a Shock to Some Supporters
Politico, which broke the story about Harris’ withdrawal from the race, reported that the “news came as a shock to some of her biggest supporters.”
Harris’ decision to suspend her campaign came even though a super PAC had cleared more than $1 million in TV ads in Iowa to boost her struggling campaign, Politico noted.
Harris launched her campaign in front of 20,000 people at a chilly, outdoor event in January. The first woman and first black attorney general and U.S. senator in California’s history, she was widely viewed as a candidate poised to excite the same segment of voters that sent Barack Obama to the White House.
She raised an impressive $12 million in the first three months of her campaign and quickly locked down major endorsements meant to show her dominance in her home state, which offers the biggest delegate haul in the Democratic primary contest.
But as the field grew, Harris’ fundraising remained flat; she was unable to attract the type of attention being showered on Pete Buttigieg by traditional donors or the grassroots firepower that drove tens of millions of dollars to Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.
Inconsistent Message to Voters
Harris suffered from what allies and critics viewed as an inconsistent message. Her slogan “for the people,” referenced her career as a prosecutor, a record the campaign struggled to pitch to the party’s most progressive voters.
Through the summer, she focused on pocketbook issues and her “3 a.m. agenda,” a message that never seemed to resonate with voters. By the fall, she had returned to her courtroom roots with the refrain that “justice is on the ballot,” both a cry for economic and social justice as well as her call that she could “prosecute the case” against a “criminal” president, Donald Trump.
Pledges to Keep Working to Defeat Trump
Harris against cited the importance she places on defeating Trump in her statement Tuesday.
“And I want to be clear: although I am no longer running for president, I will do everything in my power to defeat Donald Trump and fight for the future of our country and the best of who we are.”
(Associated Press contributed to this report.)