WASHINGTON (AFP) — Longshot Democratic candidate Dennis Kucinich will announce Friday that he is dropping his presidential bid, officials with his campaign said Thursday.
Kucinich, 61, a member of Congress representing a district in the midwestern state of Ohio, is one of his party's leading left-wing figures.
He has called a news conference for midday Friday to announce plans for "transitioning out of the Democratic presidential primary race," officials said in a brief statement.
In an interview with the leading Ohio newspaper, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Kucinich said he will not endorse another Democrat in the primary.
"I want to continue to serve in Congress," he told the newspaper.
Kucinich focused his presidential campaign heavily on an immediate withdrawal of US troops from Iraq.
His bid never caught fire among party faithful: he gained no delegates in the Democratic Party caucuses in Iowa and Nevada, and won a mere 1.4 percent support in the New Hampshire primary.
Kucinich will instead be seeking a seventh two-year term in Congress, the Plain Dealer reported.
The Democratic presidential hopefuls are New York Senator Hillary Clinton, Illinois Senator Barack Obama and former North Carolina senator John Edwards. Former Alaska Senator Mike Gravel is also running, but far behind in the polls.
Kucinich will make his announcement Friday at a union hall in Cleveland, Ohio, campaign officials said.
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