She says she will keep campaigning up until Thursday and won't say if she will stay on a Liberal leader after the election.
"I believed we had a good shot at this ..."
Wynne at times wiped away tears as she spoke about her record in government. "I stand by the plan we put forward", she said.
Wynne was surrounded by supporters and campaign staff as she appealed to voters to deliver as many Liberal seats as possible in order to force a minority Progressive Conservative or NDP government.
Kathleen Wynne, who has been in the Ontario Legislature for the past 15 years, serving as premier since 2013, said "I will no longer be Ontario's Premier".
In his statement, Thibeault pointed to some of what he has brought to the riding since 2015, including the PET Scanner for Health Sciences North, the Fabio Belli sports complex, and funding for Science North. "I need your vote to make that happen".
"Kathleen Wynne has abandoned the fight against Doug Ford cuts".
"On June 7th voters will elect a new government".
Therefore, she says people should vote Liberal to ensure the other parties can not win anything except a minority. She warned a majority government would give either Tory Leader Doug Ford or NDP Leader Andrea Horwath a "blank cheque" to enact "risky" policies. "Let's not go from bad to worse".
Ford had little to say about the announcement, noting only that the election is about change and people are fed up.
Asked if he was surprised by Wynne's decision, Ford said his team is focused on getting its message out.
Meanwhile, Windsor-Tecumseh candidate Remy Boulbol said in a written statement that Wynne has been an "inspiration to me as a woman looking to enter politics", and that the Liberal platform remains best for Ontario.
When it came to the NDP - she didn't refer to Horwath by name - she said voters worry about the economic damage they could inflict by raising taxes on small businesses and stifle job growth while not using legislation to break up strikes. "They're hoping they can salvage (the party).it's about saying to people: don't abandon us".
Local Liberal candidates are praising Wynne for taking a stepping back, and making this election less about herself.
"So I think electorally, it's strategic, but as a leader of a party, I actually think it's really selfless. She's saying, 'I'm not going to destroy this organization with my own personal hubris'".