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Mike Pompeo says he will not run for president in 2024

The former secretary of state under Donald Trump announced on Friday that he would be sitting out the 2024 race for the GOP nomination.
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Md., on Mar. 3.Anna Moneymaker / Getty Images

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Friday that he will not be seeking the Republican nomination for president in 2024.

"Susan and I have concluded, after much consideration and prayer, that I will not present myself as a candidate to become President of the United States in the 2024 election," Pompeo tweeted Friday evening.

In a statement, Pompeo described the decision as "personal," adding the "time is not right for me and my family."

"To those of you this announcement disappoints, my apologies," he said. "And to those of you this thrills, know that I'm 59 years-old. There remains many more opportunities for which the timing might be more fitting as presidential leadership becomes even more necessary."

Pompeo had been exploring a presidential bid and began doing more public events as he published a memoir — one he advertised on promotional materials as reading "like a thriller with stories from my heart."

But in recent months, Pompeo largely disappeared from public view. He mostly eschewed visits to early primary states as other candidates and potential rivals began staking out ground. Pompeo’s travel schedule included a visit to Ukraine more recently than it a visit to Iowa.

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, who also served under former President Donald Trump, announced her campaign in February and has sought to carve out a foreign policy lane for herself — a lane Pompeo would also have occupied in a primary.

In recent days, Pompeo had started telling early state activists that he was going to sit out the presidential race in 2024, a person with direct knowledge of the conversations told NBC News.

“Money is definitely an issue, and it seems like his announcement window passed," the person said. "And what’s his lane? Foreign policy — but Nikki Haley has had a great rollout and is already harnessing that lane and has the donors lined up."

On Friday, Pompeo delivered a roughly 30-second video message to attendees at the National Rifle Association’s annual conference in Indianapolis.

Speaking at last month’s Conservative Political Action Conference, Pompeo received a muted response when he expressed dismay with the GOP’s disappointing midterm results, saying: “We should have won big.”

“Losing is bad because losing is bad,” Pompeo said. “But the principles that we stand for are what’s really at risk. … The problem is that the losses are a symptom of something much bigger. I think it’s a crisis in conservatism. We have lost confidence that we are right.”

Before serving as secretary of state, Pompeo was Trump's CIA director. Previously, he served in Congress as a representative from Kansas from 2011-2017.