Retired surgeon Ben Carson says 'no path forward' in 2016 race after Super Tuesday results

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson announced Wednesday that he sees no “political path forward” after his Super Tuesday losses and will not attend the upcoming Fox News debate.

The retired neurosurgeon did not officially suspend his campaign, saying he’ll discuss the “future of this movement” during a speech Friday at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

But he made clear he’s stepping to the side as the four other Republican candidates continue to wage a battle for the GOP nomination. 

“I have decided not to attend the Fox News GOP Presidential Debate tomorrow night in Detroit,” he said in a statement Thursday. “Even though I will not be in my hometown of Detroit on Thursday, I remain deeply committed to my home nation, America. 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.”

Carson was the consummate outsider candidate – a non-politician who forged an illustrious career in medicine, far removed from the Washington world of lobbyists and lawyers. Known for his affable, soft-spoken, and sometimes-awkward speaking style, he was an unpredictable presence on the debate stage and at rallies.

He enjoyed a surge in the polls last year, at one point becoming competitive with Donald Trump. But he has not won a single contest, and was solidly in last place in the delegate count following Super Tuesday.