Vivek Ramaswamy ends presidential campaign after Iowa, endorsing Trump instead

Photo Courtesy of Rian Nelson - WEBN

By Sofia Mendes, WEBN Reporter

Biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy suspended his 2024 presidential campaign on Monday after a fourth-place finish in the Iowa caucuses endorsing Donald Trump instead. 

Although Ramaswamy had been polling in the single digits, he had ensured supporters and media that the campaign was “going to shatter expectations” on caucus night. Ramaswamy had visited all 99 counties in Iowa at least two times in preparation for the state’s caucuses, holding more campaign events in Iowa than any other GOP candidate. 

However, after receiving just under 8 percent of the vote on Monday, Ramaswamy addressed supporters in Des Moines stating, “It is true we did not achieve the surprise that we wanted to deliver tonight.”

Ramaswamy had been running what he referred to as an “America First” campaign sharing that he believed he could go further than Donald Trump, but unlike other GOP candidates, never bashing the work of the former president. 

Earlier tonight, I called Donald Trump to tell him that I congratulate him on his victory,” said Ramaswamy. “And now, going forward, he [Trump] will have my full endorsement for the presidency.” 

Minutes later, in his victory speech, Trump stated, “I also want to congratulate Vivek because he did a hell of a job.” 

The two have remained closely aligned ideologically as Ramaswamy has stated on multiple occasions that he would commit to pardoning Trump should Ramaswamy win the presidency. 

As Ramaswamy leaves the race with only 4 percent of the votes nationally, his exit may further support Trump, particularly in New Hampshire where Republican candidates head next. 

A recent CNN/University of New Hampshire poll has Trump leading New Hampshire’s Republican Primary with 39 percent of the vote, but that percentage is low in comparison to Trump’s support nationwide and Nikki Haley trails by only 7 points. 

However, according to aggregated polling data, ABC found that 39 percent of Ramaswamy supporters in New Hampshire said that Trump is their second-choice candidate meaning that their support alongside Ramaswamy’s endorsement could help Trump secure a stronger lead in the Granite State on Tuesday.