Fasio Withdraws Candidacy, Endorses Aguard

Dodixie - Amid slipping poll numbers, presidential contender and retired Rear-Admiral Daren Fasio has announced his withdrawal from the race. Addressing a disappointed but supportive crowd at a press conference this morning, Mr. Fasio took the opportunity to endorse Governor Celes Aguard's candidacy, saying, "though Governor Aguard and I have disagreed on several issues, I feel strongly that she is an able candidate for the presidency. Further, she has the best interests of the Federation at heart, and I believe she has the political will to do what is necessary to preserve and defend this great nation."

While extremely popular among both serving and retired military personnel, Fasio's candidacy has been plagued since the beginning by a message that many have viewed as extreme. Fasio's stated intention of instituting a draft and putting the Federation's economy on a war-footing has won him few friends in the business community.

Fasio's campaign was also hurt by his own demeanor, described by many as "overly impersonal." Zalawi Marguva, a political analyst for The Scope contrasted candidates Aguard and Fasio after a recent debate, saying, "The way these two address crowds publicly is very different. Governor Aguard delivers rousing political speeches designed to fire peoples' ardor. Admiral Fasio delivers dry, fact-filled briefings designed to inform peoples' decisions."

Given the similarities between their platforms, Fasio's withdrawal would naturally lend to a bump in Governor Aguard's numbers. His endorsement was symbolic however, and Governor Aguard thanked Mr. Fasio graciously, saying "Admiral Fasio's spirit of service, both in and out of uniform, should be an example for us all. He has been an honorable and worthy adversary."