Bauer Withdraws From GOP Presidential Race

By Jim Burns | July 7, 2008 | 8:25 PM EDT

( - After poor showings in Iowa and New Hampshire, Republican Presidential candidate Gary Bauer officially announced on Friday that he is withdrawing from the Republican presidential race.

Bauer told a Washington news conference that he made his decision to withdraw during the New Hampshire primary election returns last Tuesday night.

"I made the decision as I was sitting there watching the returns in New Hampshire. We had a plan to get the necessary delegates to win the nomination. But, when Louisiana (Republican party caucus) was cancelled and in Iowa and New Hampshire we under-performed, we then had to look at what other states were coming up and what were the realistic possibilities of getting the number of delegates that you needed," Bauer said.

Bauer said that, if he had been a "symbolic candidate", he would have stayed in the race.

"A symbolic candidate can campaign with a cell phone and a rental car and continue to make his point all the way up to the convention. I was in it to actually get the nomination. When it became clear to me that I couldn't see a realistic way to do that, then it seemed to me that the better part of valor was to move aside," Bauer said.

Bauer said that, if anything needed to be changed in the presidential nominating process, it would be lengthening the "voting process."

"Not the campaign, that's long enough. But spread out the primaries some more because I think that it's tough for any outsider, any underdog, to deal with the concentrated nature of the primaries," Bauer said.

Bauer also would not announce any endorsement for the Republican presidential nomination. He also would not answer whether he would accept a vice presidential slot on the national ticket.

When asked by if he would return to the Family Research Council (FRC), Bauer would not give a yes or no answer. He would only say that he will take the next several days to decide what he wants to do. He said he definitely wants to remain in the "political arena", but he would not say in what capacity.

One of Bauer's rivals, Governor George W Bush (R-TX) commended Bauer for running "a good race."

"Gary Bauer is a good man. He ran a good race, and he spoke passionately and effectively about the importance of traditional conservative values. I commend him for the campaign he waged. I share his commitment to restoring a sense of virtue and responsibility to our society. And I look forward to earning the support of the Bauer supporters," Bush said in a prepared statement.