Joe Walsh, the United States Representative from Illinois who intended to challenge President Trump for the Republican Party‘s nomination for president in 2020, has suspended his campaign, effectively putting an end to it.
Speaking to CNN on Friday morning, Walsh said that, now that he’s out of the race, he intends to back whomever the Democrats nominate to run against Donald Trump — assuming Trump wins the party’s nomination. He was asked specifically he intends to back “any Democrat,” to which Walsh responded in the affirmative.
“Donald Trump is a dictator, he’s a king. He literally is the greatest threat to this country right now. Any Democrat would be better than Trump in the White House,” he said.
He admits that it’s a difficult thing to say as a Republican, but notes that these are serious times.
Asked which Democrat he thinks would be better than Trump, and which one he intends to support, Walsh wasn’t able to commit directly.
Walsh did say, however, that he intends to devote his time during this campaign season to encouraging Republicans and Moderates to vote for the eventual Democratic nominee.
“Your only option is a Democrat. It’s not Trump, it’s not the cult,” he said, acknowledging that committed Republicans are going to be resistant to the idea, calling them “cult-like Republicans” who “can’t be reached.”
But he also noted that the Republican Party is losing people because of Trump.
Great time with Congressman Joe Walsh. Most engaging politician o far. pic.twitter.com/nQopMPbg1S
— Alan Goode (@AlanGoode12) February 2, 2020
Asked whether or not he would support even Bernie Sanders, who is in many ways the political opposite of the former Tea Party conservative, Walsh said that he’d Feel The Bern if it came to getting Trump out of the Oval Office.
Walsh was unambiguous: “I would rather have a socialist in the White House than a king,” he said.
As The Chicago Tribune reports, Walsh’s decision to suspend his campaign follows an extremely poor showing in the Iowa Caucuses.
Walsh’s candidacy for president was considered a long shot on the day it began. Trump enjoys nearly-unanimous support among Republican voters and Republican leadership, and the odds were always slim that the party would ditch its popular incumbent for a challenger. Indeed, the party’s leadership has already passed a resolution declaring that Trump would be its nominee in 2020.
Walsh, for his part, failed to even get his name on the ballot in several states.
Meanwhile, former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld continues to run against Trump as a Republican.