Larry Elder drops out of 2024 GOP primary, backs Trump

Republican presidential candidate Larry Elder is suspending his 2024 campaign for the White House and has endorsed former President Trump for the party nominee.

“As I look at the path forward, and after careful consideration and consultation with my campaign team, I have made the difficult decision to suspend my campaign,” Elder said in a statement announcing the end of his campaign.

“Now that I am exiting the race,” he continued. “I am proud to announce my endorsement of Donald Trump for President of the United States.”

The conservative radio host jumped into the GOP primary with his longshot bid in April, citing a “moral, religious, and a patriotic duty” to run for the Oval Office.

Elder had expressed optimism in August about getting on the GOP’s first presidential primary debate stage, but he failed to meet the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) polling and donor thresholds to qualify to join his fellow candidates.

In an opinion piece for The Hill, Elder wrote that the RNC “rigged the rules of the game” with its debate requirements. He and fellow White House hopeful Perry Johnson announced plans to sue the RNC for not allowing them on the stage.

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Elder also wasn’t able to make the second stage in September, when the polling and donor thresholds were raised higher.

In the half a year since he launched his White House bid, the Republican has struggled to make gains against his GOP rivals in the polls.

FiveThirtyEight’s tracker of polling averages doesn’t include Elder among the candidates it considers “major,” and he’s been left off Morning Consult’s regular tests of the GOP field.

Elder had previously lost a bid for California governor in a recall election against Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) in 2021. He opted against challenging the incumbent governor in early 2022.

He left his longtime radio show, “The Larry Elder Show,” last year and launched a political action committee to support Republican candidates in federal and local races.

Elder’s exit from the race narrows the crowded field of Republican presidential candidates scrambling to lessen the lead held by former President Trump, the party front-runner.

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