Retired neurosurgeon and bestselling author Ben Carson said in a statement Wednesday he does "not see a political path forward" for his campaign after his poor showing on Super Tuesday.
Carson announced he won't attend the Fox News GOP debate on Thursday in Detroit, and said he would further discuss his political plans at the Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Maryland, on Friday.
"Even though I will not be in my hometown of Detroit on Thursday, I remain deeply committed to my home nation, America," Carson's statement said. "I do not see a political path forward in light of last evening’s Super Tuesday primary results. However, this grassroots movement on behalf of 'We the People' will continue. Along with millions of patriots who have supported my campaign for President, I remain committed to Saving America for Future Generations. We must not depart from our goals to restore what God and our Founders intended for this exceptional nation."
Things were bleak at Carson's campaign headquarters on Super Tuesday. Asked by The Huffington Post to clarify whether he would drop out, Carson simply replied, "We'll see."
On Monday, Carson penned an op-ed for Fox News explaining why he'd stay in the GOP presidential primary race despite polling behind the other four candidates -- business mogul Donald Trump, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Sens. Marco Rubio (Fla.) and Ted Cruz (Texas).
"That is why I won’t listen as the pundits and politicians decree from on high. I refuse to play by Washington’s political rule book, or subjugate myself to the whims of the political class," Carson wrote.
Carson made his official campaign debut in May, marking his first run for public office. He steadily rose to the top of the polls shortly before the third Republican debate in late October, pushing out rival and business mogul Trump.
Prior to his presidential run, Carson rose to prominence as director of pediatric surgery at Johns Hopkins University. He was also the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2008 and is the author of several widely read books.
Carson gained favor among conservatives for his blunt disposition and attacks on political correctness. His speech at the 2013 National Prayer Breakfast, followed by a Wall Street Journal op-ed calling for "Ben Carson for President," ignited his presidential aspirations. He made headlines for several outlandish statements throughout his campaign, having once called Obamacare the worst thing "since slavery" and blaming the Holocaust on gun control.
Initially praised by fellow conservatives for his "truth to power" attitude, Carson found himself in the hot seat during his campaign when it was reported that claims he made about his past, including being offered a "full scholarship" to West Point and stabbing his childhood friend, were exaggerated.
Claiming to be the victim of a "political hit job," Carson often accused the press of scrutinizing him more than his fellow candidates. His disdain for the mainstream media helped garner him more support from the conservative base.