-- 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.