Indian American Vivek Ramaswamy quits Presidential race, throws support behind Trump
Indian-American entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy has dropped out of the 2024 Republican presidential race after finishing fourth in the Iowa caucuses.
Taking to social media platform X, Ramaswamy endorsed former President Donald Trump and urged Republican voters to put an "America First patriot" in the White House.
The 38-year-old political novice said at a press conference at Des Moines: "There is no path for me to be the next president absent things that we don't want to see happen in this country."
"We did not achieve the surprise we wanted to deliver tonight," Ramaswamy said.
Ramaswamy finished fourth in Iowa, according to media projections, well behind Trump, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.
The biotech entrepreneur said he plans to appear with Trump in New Hampshire at a Tuesday evening rally. He further expressed his support for Trump, adding that he is extremely proud of the team, the movement, and the country.
"Earlier tonight I called Donald Trump to tell him that I congratulate him on his victory. And now going forward, he will have my full endorsement for the presidency," Ramaswamy said.
Meanwhile, American media reported that a spokesperson for Ramaswamy's presidential campaign expressed dismay at the result and said the campaign is "digesting and determining" as it looks ahead to the next stage.
The Iowa caucus victory is considered the first step in Donald Trump's bid to claim the Republican nomination in a third consecutive election. Incidentally, Trump had lost in the State eight years ago.
In a speech from his campaign headquarters in Des Moines in Iowa, Trump congratulated his opponents DeSantis and Haley both of whom he thought "did very well." He also praised Vivek Ramaswamy for doing a "hell of a job," according to reports.
"They are very smart, very smart people, very capable people," Trump said of his opponents.
Ramaswamy had been one of Trump's staunchest defenders against the four indictments levelled against him. He pledged to remove himself from the ballots in Colorado and Maine after the former president was disqualified from the two states. He even vowed to pardon Trump of all charges on his first day in office.