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Elizabeth Warren ends presidential bid

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She was once the front-runner in the race to become the Democratic nominee, but on Thursday, Elizabeth Warren ended her bid to become president.

(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING:

“I will not be running for president in 2020, but I guarantee I will stay in the fight.”

Warren on Thursday said she would not be throwing her support to any other candidate just yet.

(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING:

“Well, let’s take a deep breath and spend a little time on that. We don’t have to decide that this minute.”

The progressive senator from Massachusetts emerged as a top Democratic contender for the White House on the strength of an anti-corruption platform backed by a dizzying array of policy proposals.

A former bankruptcy law professor who forged a national reputation as a scourge of Wall Street even before entering politics, she centered her campaign on battling the influence of money in politics.

Warren had banked on a strong showing on Super Tuesday after a string of disappointing finishes in the early states. But she didn’t finish in the top two in any of the 14 states that voted on Super Tuesday, and even placed third in her own home state.

(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING:

“I have no regrets at all. This has been the honor of a lifetime!”

Warren often seemed caught in the middle of the Democratic battle for hearts and minds, unable to peel away enough liberal support from Sanders or convince enough centrists that she could broaden her appeal.

(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING:

“I was told at the beginning of this whole undertaking that there are two lanes, a progressive lane that Bernie Sanders is the incumbent for, and a moderate lane that Joe Biden is the incumbent for, and there is no room for anyone else in this! I thought that wasn’t right, but evidently I was wrong.”

She was hit for her failure to initially explain how she would pay for Medicare for All, the sweeping healthcare overhaul also championed by Sanders... and then criticized when she did release a plan.

Her allies complained that she faced a double standard due to her gender, noting that Sanders - who spent months essentially waving off questions about his own lack of a detailed healthcare plan - escaped such scrutiny.

Warren was the last woman among the top tier of candidates in a Democratic field that began as the most diverse in history. Now the race has narrowed to a contest between two white men in their late 70’s.

(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) REPORTER, ASKING:

“I wonder what your message would be to the women and girls who feel like, we’re left with two white men to decide between.”

(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING:

“I know. One of the hardest parts of this is all those pinky promises, and all little girls who are going to have wait four more years.”

Her exit comes one day after former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who also had a disappointing Super Tuesday, dropped out and endorsed Biden.

Warren’s departure could provide a boost to fellow liberal Sanders if some of her support pivots to the senator from Vermont, though it’s equally plausible that Biden picks up many of her supporters.