Moderate Republican Rep. Jim Gerlach, R-Pa., always a longshot in his bid for the GOP gubernatorial nomination, has dropped out of the race. His statement, released moments ago, leaves it unclear whether he will consider running for re-election to his marginal suburban Philadelphia seat.
From his statement:
"While we have successfully raised over $1 million, traveled thousands of miles all across this Commonwealth and signed up more than 19,000 supporters eager to help us win, today's media-driven campaigns require four times that amount to wage a successful primary. That left me with two choices: either spend all of my time raising money with little time left for meeting with voters; or withdrawing my candidacy and working even harder to serve the public. I am choosing to serve the public -- many of whom have graciously rewarded me with their support for nearly two decades.
Gerlach's plans to quit Congress had opened up an excellent opportunity for Democrats -- he has consistently held the seat by narrow margins, and as an open seat it seemed ripe for a turnover. That equation changes if he tries to get back in. Five Republicans and two Democrats have already filed -- the filing deadline is next month.
Gerlach's campaign spokesman was not immediately available for comment -- an update will follow as more information becomes available.