Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), a Republican presidential candidate, has dropped out of the 2024 GOP primary, the latest high-profile exit from the race.
Scott made the announcement on Fox News’ “Sunday Night in America with Trey Gowdy,” the host himself being a former Republican congressman from South Carolina who wrote a book with Scott.
“I love America more today than I did on May 22, but when I return to Iowa, it won’t be as a presidential candidate. I’m suspending my campaign,” Scott told Gowdy. “I think the voters who are the most remarkable people on the planet were very clear in telling me: Not now, Tim.”
Scott’s campaign sent out a fundraising email just minutes before making his announcement, giving donors what it calls “one last chance to donate this weekend and help Tim reach his campaign objective.
Scott launched his candidacy in May 2022 and was the second South Carolinian after former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley to run for the White House on the Republican side. He campaigned on a largely positive and optimistic message that drew on his personal story as someone raised by a single mother who became the only sitting Black Republican senator.
The announcement came just days after the third GOP primary debate.
Over the summer, Scott briefly showed signs of momentum in the state’s early polls as the Florida governor struggled to narrow the gap between him and former President Trump.
But the South Carolina Republican was unable to capitalize on that momentum during the Republican presidential debates, notably in the first debate where he fell well behind as candidates Vivek Ramaswamy, Mike Pence and Haley faced off .
And although Scott benefited from a $22 million war chest when he entered the race – money he accumulated while fundraising as a senator – his campaign was also struggling with a high rate of money burn.
The Scott campaign announced in October that the senator would go “all in on Iowa” and move his headquarters to West Des Moines, Iowa, as the campaign increasingly viewed the Hawkeye State as the “decisive” state.
“We’ve made the decision that it’s Iowa or bust for us, and I’m looking forward to it,” Scott told conservative commentator Hugh Hewitt in late October.
Updated at 10:09 p.m.
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