Prompting immediate questions of what she does next, Sen. Elizabeth Warren ended her 2020 presidential campaign on Thursday.
"Elizabeth Warren has taken on the most powerful corporate interests because she cares about those who have been left behind. Without her, the progressive movement would not be nearly as strong as it is today. I know that she'll stay in this fight and we are grateful that she will."
—Sen. Bernie Sanders
Citing a person close to Warren, the New York Times was among the first to report that the Massachusetts senator is "ending a run defined by an avalanche of policy plans that aimed to pull the Democratic Party to the left and appealed to enough voters to make her briefly a frontrunner last fall, but that proved unable to translate excitement from elite progressives into backing from the party's more working-class and diverse base."
Warren subsequently spoke to reporters and cameras outside her home in Cambridge where she confirmed she was ending her campaign, even as she expressed a "deep sense of gratitude for every single person who got in this fight; every single person who tried on a new idea; every single person who just moved a little in their notion of what a President of the United States should look like."
"I will not be running for president in 2020," Warren continued, "but I guarantee I will stay in the fight for the hardworking folks across this country who have gotten the short end of the stick over and over. That's been the fight of my life and it will continue to be so."
Watch her remarks:
The decision to end her bid comes after failing to perform as well as she hoped in early primary states and on Super Tuesday. Supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders hope that even as she leaves the race she will throw her support behind their candidate in order to form a united "progressive front" to take on the powerful corporate forces now lined up behind former Vice President Joe Biden.
There has been no indication yet if Warren would endorse Sanders or Biden, but she said at her press event, "Well, let's take a deep breath and spend a little time on that. We don't have to decide that this minute."
Following her remarks, Sanders applauded Warren for running "an extraordinary campaign of ideas—demanding that the wealthy pay their fair share, ending corruption in Washington, guaranteeing healthcare for all, addressing climate change, tackling the student debt crisis, and vigorously protecting women's rights."
Warren, Sanders continued, "has taken on the most powerful corporate interests because she cares about those who have been left behind. Without her, the progressive movement would not be nearly as strong as it is today. I know that she'll stay in this fight and we are grateful that she will."
Other progressives responded to the news by thanking Warren and celebrating her "brilliant" and issue-focused campaign:
If the reports are true and @ewarren is suspending her campaign, I have two things to say:
1. Thank you for this campaign.
2. Thank you for the brilliant ideas—and the vital plans—that will go forward from this campaign.
Like this one https://t.co/94zyFEPabJ
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— John Nichols (@NicholsUprising) March 5, 2020
While I'm (obviously) a Bernie supporter, the only reason Elizabeth Warren came in behind a dozey old man like Biden and a smarmy nonentity like Pete is because of sexism. This country hates women, and intellectual women most of all. https://t.co/4qbcpX0jbw
— Molly Crabapple (@mollycrabapple) March 5, 2020
People for Bernie, a volunteer-led advocacy group that backs Sanders, tweeted:
Thank you @ewarren, her staff, and her supporters for running a strong issue based campaign that created space for supporters to build, not tear down.
Without Warren, there wouldn't have been the robust ideas primary which moved this country forward. https://t.co/40TXdWFpeX
— People for Bernie (@People4Bernie) March 5, 2020
As journalist and political activist Norman Solomon wrote in a Common Dreams op-ed ahead of Thursday's announcement, the "urgency" of Warren's endorsement decision "can hardly be overstated." He wrote:
Sanders and Biden are fiercely competing for votes in a half-dozen states with March 10 primaries including Michigan (with 125 delegates), Washington (89 delegates), and Missouri (68 delegates). A week later, primaries in four states—Arizona, Florida, Illinois, and Ohio—will determine the allocation of 577 delegates.
In the midst of these pivotal election battles, Warren should provide a vehement endorsement of Sanders and swiftly begin to campaign for him. Choosing, instead, to stand on the sidelines would be a tragic betrayal of progressive principles.
And journalist Ross Barkan tweeted:
The key is a major spectacle news event. Bernie gets the Warren endorsement and they do a rally together in Michigan. Enlist AOC. Make it huge. There's no other way.
No TV debate for over a week so he can't embarrass Biden before Michigan. This is his only hope.
— Ross Barkan (@RossBarkan) March 5, 2020
Warren announced her campaign in February of 2019, when she promised to take on the "rigged system that props up the rich and powerful."