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Scott Walker Is Dropping Out Of The Presidential Race

By Kate Shepherd in News on Sep 21, 2015 9:34PM

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is dropping out the race for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, according to the New York Times.

Walker is expected to make the official announcement at a press conference in Madison, Wis. today at 5 p.m. CST, according to NBC. Out of the 17 candidates for the nomination, only one other candidate has dropped out so far, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

"The short answer is money," a Walker support who was briefed on the decision told the Times. "He's made a decision not to limp into Iowa."

Walker, once a frontrunner for the nomination, failed to live up to his hype and struggled with command of the issues, sounding overly scripted and flip-flopping on issues, according to Politico.

Even in what has been a particularly weird election cycle—even by American standards, it's unusual to see a former frontrunner drop out this early. Walker was topping polls in Iowa until a series of missteps and the bizarre rise of Donald Trump and Dr. Ben Carson ate away at his lead, according to NBC. His national support had dropped to an extremely low 0.5 percent in a CNN/ORC poll released this weekend.

His controversial union-busting efforts in Wisconsin made Walker the darling of the donor classes, including the Ricketts family (the owners of the Cubs) and the Koch brothers. Walker's recent downward spiral and lackluster performance at the Republican debates were making it increasingly hard to sell tickets to his fundraisers, including one scheduled for this Thursday at the New York City apartment of Todd Ricketts, a Walker campaign national finance co-chair, according to the Times.

"Donors have totally dried up for Walker, and getting people to come on Thursday was unbelievably hard," one of the donors told the Times. "Everyone I know was just totally stunned by how difficult the fund-raising became, but the candidate and the campaign just couldn't inspire confidence."

Where will the high-profile, GOP establishment Walker donors go now? One Walker bundler is already switching his allegiance to Sen. Marco Rubio, according to Politico.