Bradley, McCain Drop Out of Race

Following disappointing showings in the nation's Super Tuesday primaries and caucuses, Bill Bradley and John S. McCain dropped out of the presidential race in rapid order yesterday, ensuring that the Democratic and Republican nominations will go to Vice President Al Gore '69 and Texas Gov. George W. Bush.

On Tuesday, McCain only managed four victories--in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Vermont--in the 13 Republican contests, while Gore swept all 16 Democratic primaries and caucuses.

Yesterday morning, as expected, they both withdrew from the race, each vowing to keep fighting for the issues they believe in.

"We have been defeated but our cause has not," Bradley said at a news conference in West Orange, N.J. He vowed that he would continue to fight for his signature issues of improved race relations, health care and campaign finance reform.

While Bradley did not release the 412 delegates he has won--so they will have a voice at the Democratic National Convention in August--he immediately endorsed Gore for the presidency.

"I believe a Democratic president can do more for this country than a Republican president can," Bradley said. He added that Gore has his "full support" and that now is the "time for unity" to win the White House.

Bradley said his campaign failed because unions and the Democratic party establishment supported Gore and because he failed to communicate that his candidacy was not one of "self interest."

"It certainly shows that when you do battle with entrenched power that it's very difficult and, indeed, I think that's what the story of the campaign was," Bradley said.