Another Republican just ended his presidential campaign -- just 6 GOP candidates are left

Jim gilmore fox news debateFox News/screenshotFormer Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore (R).

Former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore (R) suspended his presidential campaign on Friday.

His exit left just six candidates on the GOP side of the race — a sharp departure from a bustling field that once featured more than 16 notable contenders for the party’s nomination.

Gilmore had struggled to gain traction and was excluded from several of the primary debates, even the so-called undercard ones for lower-tier candidates.

He is the third candidate to quit the race since last Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina also suspended their campaigns after underperforming there and in the Iowa caucuses the week before.

In his campaign statement, Gilmore said the debate structure and the national-media environment had made it impossible for him to soldier on.

He added:

My campaign was intended to offer the gubernatorial experience with the track record of a true conservative, experienced in national security, to unite the party. My goal was to furs on the importance of this election as a real turning point, and to emphasise the dangers of continuing on a road that will further undermine America’s economy and weaken national security.

Nonetheless, I will continue to express my concerns about the dangers of electing someone who has pledged to continue Obama’s disastrous policies. And, I will continue to do everything I can to ensure that our next president is a free enterprise Republican who will restore our nation to greatness and keep our cities safe.

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