Former 2010 U.S. Senate Republican nominee Eric Wargotz said he will not enter the 2012 U.S. race for Senate. Citing strong support for incumbent Sen. Benjamin Cardin and President Barack Obama, Wargotz announced his decision late Thursday in a press release.
“After extensive research, I was humbled to learn that I remain popular among Republican primary voters and remain well positioned to win the Republican nomination for US Senate in Maryland once again,” Wargotz wrote. “Unfortunately, support for the incumbent Senator (and the President) remains strong in Maryland, despite the national political environment. In this political reality, we find ourselves in the position of being able to win the Republican nomination but falling short in the general election.”
Wargotz won the Republican nomination in the 2010 election, but lost handily to four-term incumbent Sen. Barbara Mikulski, who got 62% of the vote.
Wargot’z exit from the race will leave newcomer Daniel Bongino, a former Secret Service agent, and a handful of other relatively unknown Republican candidates to contend for the spot to challenge Cardin, who formally announces his reelection bid on Sunday.
The deadline to file for candidacy is Wednesday, Jan. 11 for the April 3 primary. Early voting for the primaries is March 24 through March 29.