White House hopeful Bernie Sanders said on Wednesday that he had spoken with rival and fellow progressive Elizabeth Warren, and that she confirmed she is pondering her future in the Democratic race after a disappointing Super Tuesday.
“We did speak on the phone a few hours ago and what Senator Warren told me is that she is assessing her campaign,” Sanders told reporters in his home state of Vermont.
“She has not made any decisions at this point. And it is important, I think, for all of us... to respect the time and the space that she needs to make her decision.”
Warren’s campaign manager said earlier in an email that her team was “obviously disappointed” by the Super Tuesday primary results, adding that the Massachusetts senator was talking to aides “to assess the path forward.”
“This decision is in her hands, and it’s important that she has the time and space to consider what comes next,” Roger Lau said in the statement.
The 70-year-old Warren lost her own home state primary on Tuesday and failed to finish in the top two of any of the 14 states voting to select a Democratic nominee to take on President Donald Trump in November’s election.
She led some national polls as recently as October but faded by the time primaries kicked off last month.
As a progressive, Warren suffered from the rise of leftist Sanders, who is now effectively in a head-to-head battle with former vice president Joe Biden, leader of the Democratic Party’s moderate wing.
Should Warren end her White House campaign, she would face pressure to endorse either Sanders or Biden.
Biden surged on Super Tuesday, claiming victories in 10 states. Sanders won three contests and leads in California, the state with the largest delegate haul at stake.
Sanders acknowledged he was “disappointed” that he did not fare better in Tuesday’s contests, but stressed he has “every reason to believe we are going to win this thing.”