Lindsey Graham Bows Out of 2016 Republican Presidential Race
By: Annie Yager, Xiro Xone News December 21, 2015
South Carolina senator and Republican presidential candidate Lindsey Graham has announced he is dropping out of the 2016 presidential race.
Graham is the fourth GOP contender to drop out of the race, following Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal. The move leaves 13 candidates remaining in the race for the Republican nod.
"I must suspend my campaign," he said on CNN this morning. "I'm not going to suspend my desire to help the country. I'll probably go back to Iraq and Afghanistan and get another update. Thirty-six trips has informed me. But the one thing I feel really good about is I did it with a smile on my face. I talked about things that are important to me and somebody better fix one day."
Graham, had been included in the undercard debates during his campaign, struggling to gain any significant support in national or early state polls. "I’m far more confident today that our party will reject the Obama doctrine of leading from behind and will provide the strong leadership America needs," Graham says in a campaign video.
"I have offered a detailed plan to win a war we cannot afford to lose and to turn back the tide of isolationism that has been rising in the Republican Party," Graham, whose campaign for the presidency lasted 204 days, said in a recent statement. "I believe we made enormous progress in this effort."
"Senator Graham has an incredibly strong and loyal grassroots network in South Carolina," GOP state chair Matt Moore said. "Given Senator Graham's huge [Senate] primary victory in South Carolina just last year, the Graham network could have a major impact on South Carolina's presidential primary."
In a statement, Graham's close friend Arizona Sen. John McCain expressed his gratitude for Graham's bid. "It is a pity that a bifurcated debate structure kept his voice and views from the wider public that needed to hear them," he said. "With Senator Lindsey Graham’s announcement, Republicans lost our most qualified, thoughtful, fearless and honest presidential candidate, not to mention the candidate with the best (and it seemed sometimes the only) sense of humor."
Other candidates expressed their thanks to Graham on Twitter for running in the race.