North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum recently announced on Monday that he’s suspending his long-shot campaign for president, after failing to gain traction among voters and appearing unlikely to qualify for the fourth GOP debate this week via CNN.
“Our decision to run for President came from a place of caring deeply about every American and a mission to re-establish trust in America’s leadership and our institutions of democracy,” the Republican said in a statement. “While this primary process has shaken my trust in many media organizations and political party institutions, it has only strengthened my trust in America.”
It has been noted that he also criticized the Republican National Committee for its debate requirements that he argued take the “power of democracy away” from Iowa and New Hampshire voters and nationalize the primary system.
The conservative second-term governor, who launched his 2024 bid in June, focused his campaign on the economy, energy and national security, and warned of China being the “No. 1 threat” to the United States. Burgum leaned into his small-town roots and his business background as a former software firm CEO and Microsoft executive.
Burgum poured millions of his own dollars into his campaign to boost his candidacy. But he lacked the national name recognition compared with his rivals, and his appearances at the first two debates failed to raise his profile.
He did not qualify for the third debate after failing to meet the heightened polling thresholds, and he was unlikely to meet the qualifications for the fourth debate taking place this week in Alabama.
To qualify for the primary debates, his campaign offered $20 gift cards to people who donated at least a dollar. The day before the first debate in Milwaukee in August, Burgum ruptured his Achilles tendon while playing a game of pickup basketball with his staff. Despite the injury, Burgum appeared onstage in Milwaukee with seven other GOP candidates, standing for the full debate in a medical boot. “I think I took them a little too literally when they said, ‘Go to Milwaukee and break a leg,’” he joked.
Following the incident, he maintained his campaign schedule, getting around on a scooter as he healed from the injury.