Julián Castro, the former Housing and Urban Development secretary who failed to gain much traction in the race for the Democratic Party’s 2020 nomination for president, has officially ended his campaign, CNN reports.
In a video posted to Twitter on Thursday morning, Castro obliquely admitted that his campaign failed to resonate with the voters.
“With only a month until the Iowa Caucuses, and given the circumstances of this campaign season, I’ve determined that it simply isn’t our time,” he said.
Castro, the only Latino to have run for POTUS this election cycle, announced his campaign in January, at a rally in his hometown of San Antonio, of which he had served as mayor for five years before taking a job in the Obama administration. In his announcement, he referenced his grandmother, an immigrant, saying that she could not have imagined that her grandson would someday be within reach of the office of the president.
What’s more, Castro’s positions on issues like immigration, housing, and policing resonated strongly with the Democratic Party’s base.
However, that resonance didn’t transfer to fundraising or a solid standing in the polls. He failed to qualify for the November and December debates and his candidacy, already that of an outlier in the crowded Democratic field, was doomed almost from the start.
It’s with profound gratitude to all of our supporters that I suspend my campaign for president today.
I’m so proud of everything we’ve accomplished together. I’m going to keep fighting for an America where everyone counts—I hope you’ll join me in that fight. pic.twitter.com/jXQLJa3AdC
— Julián Castro (@JulianCastro) January 2, 2020
The writing was on the wall as recently as late October, when Castro laid off campaign staffers and focused all of his efforts on three key states: Iowa, Nevada, and Texas. Even so, Castro couldn’t break double digits in the polls.
In wrapping up his campaign, Castro also took a shot at the Democrat Party as a whole, criticizing his party for focusing so much attention on two key states, Iowa and New Hampshire. Castro noted that those states are largely white and don’t reflect the diversity for which the Democratic Party traditionally strives.
Castro didn’t announce whom he will support for his party’s nomination now that he’s out of the race. Indeed, he’s actually been sharply critical of some of his former opponents, including Pete Buttigieg and Joe Biden.
He did, however, have words of praise for Elizabeth Warren.
“I think she has done a very impressive job on the campaign trail…. I think right now she is doing a fantastic job of fusing her biography… with her policies,” he said.
With Castro having left the race, the field for the Democratic Party’s nomination is now down to 14 candidates, according to Ballotpedia.