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Race to Replace Pence Gets Less Crowded

Former Wayne County, Ind., Sheriff Matt Strittmatter (R) dropped out of the race to succeed Rep. Mike Pence (R), announcing he will instead back former Indiana Republican Party Executive Director Luke Messer.

“Over the last year, I have been exploring a run for the United States House of Representatives sixth congressional district seat,” Strittmatter said in a statement released by the Messer campaign. “This path of exploration has unexpectedly provided what we believe to be a better way, for me to continue to serve Hoosiers, but will not allow my continued run for Congress.”

Messer faces financial adviser Don Bates, who lost a primary bid for Senate in 2010, and real estate investor Travis Hankins, who lost a primary for the 9th district last year.