Montana Sen. John Walsh Abandons Senate Race After Plagiarism Scandal

PHOTO: In this March 27 file photo, Sen. John Walsh, D-Mont., speaks on the National Mall in Washington. (Charles Dharapak,File/AP)
FILE- In this March 27, 2014 file photo, Sen. John Walsh, D-Mont., speaks on the National Mall in Washington. A campaign spokeswoman says Walsh is taking personal time at his Helena home but declined to answer questions about whether he plans to remain in the U.S. Senate race amid allegations that he plagiarized a research paper. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak,File)

Sen. John Walsh, Democrat of Montana, is abandoning his fall election bid in the wake of a plagiarism scandal that shook his campaign late last month.

"The 2007 research paper from my time at the U.S. Army War College has become a distraction from the debate you expect and deserve," Walsh said in a statement. "I am ending my campaign so that I can focus on fulfilling the responsibility entrusted to me as your U.S. Senator. You deserve someone who will always fight for Montana, and I will."

"It is time for us all to return to the real issues of this election," he added.

Walsh intends to serve out the rest of his appointed term, one official tells ABC News.

He has been under heavy pressure to leave the race, including calls from party officials and editorials in his state's newspapers.