San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom abandoned his bid for the Democratic nomination and withdrew from the California governor’s race due to family and work responsibilities, he announced on Friday.
"This is not an easy decision. But it is one I make with the best intentions for my wife, daughter, the residents of the city and county of San Francisco, and California Democrats," Mayor Newsom said in a prepared statement.
Newsom was running for California governor next year, succeeding incumbent term-limited Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
“When I embarked on this campaign in April, my goal was to engage thousands and thousands of Californians dedicated to reforming our broken system and bringing change to Sacramento,” he said.
Mayor Newsom was endorsed by former president Bill Clinton.
Despite an endorsement and high-profile fundraising effort from the former president Bill Clinton earlier this month, a Field poll released on Oct. 8 showed Newsome trailing behind all republican gubernatorial candidates.
One of the main opponents to Newsom would have been the former governor of California and current California Attorney General Jerry Brown who, according to experts had the potential to out-fundraise Newsom six-to-one.
The San Francisco Mayor made the national headlines in 2004 when he defied state law and directed the city of San Francisco to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
He was also a high-profile supporter of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign during the presidential bid before she left the race.
"Today's announcement by Mayor Newsom has little impact beyond the irony that the party that likes to lecture everyone about diversity is down to just one candidate for governor in an open seat election seven months before the primary," said California Republican Party in a statement.
Newsom's campaign declined to comment on his future plans.