Mitt Romney dropped out of the 2008 presidential race during a speech before the Conservative Political Action Committee in Washington D.C. Thursday.
To this date, Romney had won seven states, while top rival John McCain had won 13. But McCain's lead in delegates made it almost impossible for Romney to stage a comeback.
"Size does matter," Romney said in the speech, referring to McCain's lead.
"I disagree with Senator McCain on a number of issues as you know," Romney said. "But I agree with him on doing whatever it takes to be successful in Iraq."
Romney said if he fought on all the way to the convention, he would forestall McCain's opportunity to launch a national campaign against Senators Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama. Romney said "I simply cannot let my campaign be a part of aiding a surrender to terror."
"This isn't an easy decision. I hate to lose," Romney said. "If this was only about me, I'd go on," he added. "Because I love America, in this time of war, I feel I have to now stand aside for our party and for our country," Romney added.
Romney made no endorsement of McCain.
The announcement leaves candidates Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul as the remaining two Republican candidates in the race to challenge frontrunner McCain.