The 2020 presidential race claimed its latest casualty on Tuesday, as reports claim that California Senator Kamala Harris is suspending her campaign.
As Politico reports, Harris informed staff of her decision to drop out of the race during a Tuesday phone call with staff. The publication claimed that the candidate will soon be releasing a video to announce her decision to the general public.
The news caps a whirlwind year for Harris, who came into the 2020 race as one of the leading contenders in the Democratic primaries but has watched support dwindle in recent months amid a historically crowded field. As of the time of publication, she sits in sixth in poll averages tallied by RealClearPolitics, just behind billionaire Michael Bloomberg. A late entrant in the race, Bloomberg announced his candidacy last week.
As a recent New York Times profile claimed, Harris’ campaign was beset by internal disorganization and lack of clarity surrounding the candidate’s message.
“For a time, she sought to highlight a pragmatic agenda, about matters she said voters thought about while lying awake at 3 a.m.,” the publication reported. “Today, her aides are given to gallows humor about just how many slogans and one-liners she has cycled through, with one recalling how ‘speak truth spring’ gave way to ‘3 a.m. summer’ before the current, Trump-focused ‘justice winter.’”
To her credit, Harris had among the most robust LGBTQ+ platforms of any candidate in the race. Her agenda included a pledge to appoint a Chief Advocate for LGBTQ+ issues in the White House, as well as promises to pass the Equality Act, allowing trans people to serve openly in the military, and banning conversion therapy.
LGBTQ+ advocates remained critical, however, of her support for FOSTA/SESTA, a pair of sex trafficking bills targeting sex workers.
News of Harris’ departure surfaced one day after Montana Governor Steve Bullock and outsider candidate Joe Sestak announced they would no longer be seeking the nomination for president.
Although nearly two dozen candidates ran for the White House this year, only six contenders have qualified for the next debate: Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, Bernie Sanders, Amy Klobuchar, and Tom Steyer. Although Harris had qualified, Cory Booker, Andrew Yang, Tulsi Gabbard, and Julián Castro have not.