Amy Klobuchar has ended her Democratic presidential campaign and will endorse rival Joe Biden in an effort to unify moderate voters behind the former vice president’s White House bid.
The Minnesota senator is flying to Dallas and plans to join Mr Biden at his rally on Monday night.
She had outlasted several better-known and better-funded Democrats, thanks to a better-than-expected third-place finish in in New Hampshire, but she could not turn that into success elsewhere as she struggled to build a campaign that could compete across the country, and had poor showings in the next contests.
The three-term senator had one of the more memorable campaign launches, standing outside in a Minnesota snowstorm last February to tout her “grit” and Midwestern sensibilities.
Ms Klobuchar argued that her record of getting things done in Washington and winning even in Republican parts of her state would help her win traditionally Democratic heartland states like Wisconsin and Michigan that flipped in 2016 to give Donald Trump the presidency.
She was hoping to own the moderate lane of a Democratic field that grew to two dozen candidates, but that got tougher when Mr Biden joined the race in April, starting as a front-runner and remaining there.
Ms Klobuchar was also quickly overshadowed by Pete Buttigieg, a fellow Midwesterner who shot from being the largely unknown mayor of South Bend, Indiana, to a top contender on a mix of intelligence, strong oratory and youthful optimism.
He dropped out on Sunday, saying he no longer had a viable path to the nomination.
Ms Klobuchar entered the race with low name recognition compared with many rivals, a disadvantage she was still citing a year into her campaign. Outside Minnesota, the lawyer and former prosecutor was best known for her questioning of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh during a 2018 Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
Even before she got into the race, she was hit with news stories claiming she mistreated her Senate staff, and she had a higher-than-usual turnover rate in her office.
Ms Klobuchar said she is a “tough boss” but countered that she has several long-time employees, including the manager of her presidential campaign.
She campaigned on her productivity in Washington, where she led more than 100 bills that were signed into law, and she criticised the more liberal candidates in the field, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, for running on promises she said they could not keep.