Kansas Rep. Jim Ward quits governor's race

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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) — A member of the Kansas House of Representatives announced Wednesday he was dropping out of this year's gubernatorial race.

Calling the day "bittersweet," Rep. Jim Ward (D-Wichita) said he would give up on his campaign for the Democratic nomination and, instead, file to retain his seat in the 86th District.

"This past session demonstrated that if we want good jobs, strong schools, affordable healthcare, non-discriminatory policies for our LGBTQ friends, and protections for working Kansas, it takes more of our votes," Ward said.

Even though he's no longer in a statewide race, Ward is urging his supporters to join in the efforts to elect other Democrats to the House.

"There are talented men and women running for office, and we must support them. I hope you’ll join me in elevating their efforts," he added.

With Ward out of the race, seven other candidates have declared their interest in running for the Democratic nomination:

    Arden Andersen, physician;
  • Jack Bergeson, high school student;
  • Carl Brewer, former Mayor of Wichita;
  • Laura Kelly, State Senator;
  • Robert Klingenberg, salesman;
  • Josh Svaty, former Kansas Secretary of Agriculture and former state representative;
  • Michael Tabman, former FBI agent.