Another one bites the dust!
Former Vice President Mike Pence made the announcement on Saturday that he would be suspending his 2024 presidential campaign. In a speech delivered at the Republican Jewish Coalition Conference, Pence candidly expressed, “It has become evident to me that this is not my moment. Therefore, I have chosen to put my presidential campaign on hold, effective immediately.”
According to The Hill, he continued, addressing the American people by saying, “To the citizens of our great nation, I want to convey that while it may not be my time, it is still your time.”
Pence’s decision to step back from the crowded GOP field, which is currently led by his former running mate, ex-President Trump, came after he struggled to gain a decisive edge over other Republican candidates in the race to catch up with the frontrunner.
Pence officially launched his campaign in early June, emphasizing the need for “distinctive leadership” and highlighting his extensive experience as a congressman, governor of Indiana, and his tenure in the White House. He repeatedly expressed his pride in the Trump-Pence administration, despite his occasional criticisms of his former boss.
In a video released when he announced his candidacy, Pence shared his commitment to serving the nation. He stated, “My family and I have been immensely fortunate to have opportunities to serve our country. While it would be easier to remain on the sidelines, that’s not the way I was raised.”
Pence’s decision to break with former President Trump became evident after the 2020 election loss when he certified the results confirming President Biden’s victory, despite immense pressure from Trump, who continued to assert claims of widespread election fraud.
Throughout his campaign, the former vice president, who also served as Indiana’s governor and congressman, steadfastly championed traditional conservative values, often differing with candidates like Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Pence advocated for stricter limits on abortion, supported U.S. aid for Ukraine in its conflict with Russia, and openly acknowledged the need for reform in programs such as Social Security and Medicare.
However, Pence’s focus on policy matters failed to translate into stronger poll numbers or generate enthusiasm among donors, especially given Trump’s dominance in the race. Despite standing out on the party’s first presidential debate stage in Milwaukee in August, Pence consistently polled in single digits as the campaign season progressed.
Financial filings revealed that Pence raised $3.3 million during the third fundraising quarter but also accumulated around $620,000 in debt. By the end of September, he had only approximately $1.2 million in cash on hand. In comparison, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is widely seen as Trump’s leading rival, raised $15 million across his campaign committee, leadership PAC, and joint fundraising committee during the same quarter. Meanwhile, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley generated $11 million from three of her political committees in that period.
Pence’s exit from the GOP primary race narrows the field of White House hopefuls vying to catch up with Trump, leaving his supporters to shift their focus toward other candidates.