Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman will drop out of the race for president in South Carolina Monday.
Huntsman, who had just received the endorsement of South Carolina’s largest newspaper, The State, will endorse Mitt Romney, according to multiple reports.
Since Huntsman and Romney would have competed for the same voters, Huntsman’s dropping out will make it more difficult for a conservative, anti-Romney candidate to emerge because Romney will now consolidate the moderate votes in the primary.
Huntsman officially dropped out on Monday. He said the presidential race “has degenerated into an onslaught of negative and personal attacks not worthy of the American people” and called on candidates to cease the negative attacks.
He then endorsed Romney because he was the best candidate to defeat Obama.
Huntsman then spoke about how the country needed to close the trust deficit in its institutions, a theme that may become even more powerful in the coming years.