( dpa ) - Democratic presidential hopeful Bill Richardson may be droping out of the 2008 US election race after a poor showing in the first two contests of the party's presidential nomination process, media reports said Wednesday.
Richardson, the governor of New Mexico who had been campaigning on the back of a wide range of positions held during decades in public office, was expected to announce his departure in a speech Thursday, broadcaster CNN reported citing sources close to the governor. But a campaign spokesman told network NBC that he was still very much in the race.
Richardson polled only 5 per cent in the New Hampshire primary Tuesday and 2 per cent in the Iowa caucuses January 3 - coming in fourth both times in the first voters preference polls on the long road to securing the party nomination.
The battle to represent the Democratic party appears to be shaping up as a two-horse race between youthful Illinois Senator Barack Obama, who won in Iowa, and former first lady Hillary Clinton, who was a surprise winner in New Hampshire.
Once a congressman as well as US ambassador to the United Nations and energy secretary under former President Bill Clinton, Richardson has struggled against the prevailing message of change coming from Obama and the political machinery, experience and campaign coffers of Clinton.