Giuliani Ends White House Bid, Endorses McCain

"We ran a campaign that was uplifting," Giuliani said, not officially leaving the race but speaking in the past tense. "The responsibility of leadership doesn't end with a single campaign. If you believe in a cause, it goes on and you continue to fight for it, and we will."

He thanked his wife. He thanked his campaign manager. He thanked his senior advisers.

It was a farewell address.

Endorsing McCain

Giuliani even made a joking reference to his more moderate views on social issues -- abortion, guns, gay and lesbian rights -- that alienated many in the Republican base.

"We are the party of the people," he said. "And we're a big party. We're a big party, and we're getting bigger. I'm even in this party. This is a big party."

After his speech, when reporters asked him what he would do next, all Giuliani would say was that he was flying to California.

His endorsement would not come as a surprise.

Even as a candidate himself, campaigning in Iowa, Giuliani said, "I happen to be a very big admirer of Sen. McCain, and I can tell you quite honestly that if I weren't running for president I would be here supporting him. If for some reason I made a decision not to run, he'd be my candidate."

After Giuliani left the ballroom Tuesday evening, McCain came on stage in Miami.

"I want to thank, my dear friend Rudy Giuliani," McCain said, "who invested his heart and soul in this primary, and who conducted himself with all the qualities of the exceptional American leader he truly is."

Then in a clear indication he knew Giuliani was bowing out, McCain said, "Thank you for all you have added to this race, and for being an inspiration to me and millions of Americans."

Sunshine State Sets on Rudy

Giuliani set up the Sunshine State as make or break, and it broke him.

On Election Day, plummeting polls hanging like a noose, Giuliani swung through southern Florida -- Miami to Fort Lauderdale to Pompano Beach to Del Ray Beach.

This was supposed to be his stronghold, but crowds were sparse.

Potential Giuliani supporters said they were concerned about wasting their vote by casting their lot with him. They wanted their ballot to mean something in the face-off between McCain and Romney.

Giuliani knew it was coming. His meetings with supporters and volunteers were bittersweet. Hugs and kisses. Farewell, friends.

As Giuliani entered the campaign's Broward County headquarters, the former New York Mayor was greeted by a tanned state representative in short sleeves.

"That first fundraiser," state Rep. Carl Domino, Giuliani's Palm Beach County coordinator, nostalgically said to him. Domino had hosted a fundraiser for Giuliani in his home March 31.

"You've been there from the beginning," Giuliani said, giving him a hug.

Domino seemed resigned to an imminent end to the campaign. And he said Giuliani's strategy of largely bypassing the early states and focusing everything on the Sunshine State was a mistake.

"You gotta show you can compete," he told ABC News, adding that decent showings in New Hampshire and South Carolina would have helped Giuliani immeasurably. "He didn't have to win, he just had to be competitive," Domino said. "But they didn't ask me."

When asked whether the strategy was a mistake, actor Jon Voight -- who endorsed and traveled with Giuliani throughout Florida -- said, "There will be time to assess all that after today, and maybe it should be assessed."

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