The Republican field has gotten a little smaller, as former conservative talk radio host Larry Elder announced Thursday that he was ending his 2024 presidential campaign, and he immediately threw his support behind former president Donald Trump.
Elder, who was a long-shot candidate, had previously sought to replace California’s Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom in a failed 2021 recall effort.
“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.
“Now that I am exiting the race, I am proud to announce my endorsement of Donald Trump for President of the United States,” the talk show host added.
The full statement from Elder has been posted to X – the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.
Failure to Launch
Elder’s campaign failed to gain any momentum, and while he had expressed optimism in August that he would reach the Republican National Committee’s (RNC’s) polling and donor thresholds to qualify for the first GOP debate, his efforts came up short.
In an op-ed for TheHill.com, Elder claimed the RNC “rigged the rules of the game” and he and fellow Republican hopeful Perry Johnson – who dropped out last Friday – announced they plan to sue the RNC.
Elder, who launched his White House bid in April, has struggled to make any gains in the polls, and he was unable to reach the polling and donor thresholds for the second GOP debate. He left his longtime talk radio program, “The Larry Elder Show,” last year and launched a political action committee to support Republican candidates in federal and local races.
He made his first bid for public office in 2021 when Elder received the most votes out of 46 people who were seeking to replace Newsom in California’s recall effort. However, a majority of voters ended up voting against removing Newsom, making the vote count in the replacement contest irrelevant.
Elder, who is Black, has criticized Democrats’ “woke” agenda, Black Lives Matter, and the notion of systemic racism. Those positions have put him at odds with many other Black people. He also faced heavy scrutiny related to his long history of disparaging remarks about women, and CNN reported that Elder was accused of domestic violence and of brandishing a gun in 2015 by his then-fiancée and former employee Alexandra Datig. Elder has denied the allegations.
The Fourth GOP Candidate to Bow Out
Larry Elder has become the fourth “major” candidate to suspend or end his 2024 GOP bid.
In late August, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez became the first Republican presidential hopeful to bow out of the race after failing to qualify for the first GOP primary debate.
Former Texas congressman Will Hurd suspended his campaign two weeks ago. His effort had been built around criticizing former President Trump and he went on to endorse former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley. Hurd also failed to qualify for the Republican debates.
Last week, businessman Perry Johnson – who was unable to reach the RNC’s debate polling and donor thresholds – dropped out of the race. He had previously tried to run for governor of Michigan last year but was disqualified after his campaign filed invalid nominating signatures. Like Elder, Johnson has endorsed Trump.
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.
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