TOPEKA, Kan. — The Democratic candidate challenging Senator Pat Roberts in the general election has withdrawn from the race.
According to the Kansas Secretary of State's office, Shawnee County District Attorney Chad Taylor came into their office Wednesday afternoon and withdrew from the race.
Taylor issued a separate statement saying he made the decision after consulting with his staff, supporters and Democratic Party leaders. He did not give a reason.
He said, "Effective today, my campaign is terminated."
Now, only three remain: Republican incumbent Pat Roberts, Independent Greg Orman and Libertarian Randall Batson.
It's not clear whether the Democratic Party can and will replace Taylor on the November ballot. State chair Joan Wagnon told the Associated Press she would need several days to sort out the situation.
Secretary of State Kris Kobach says based on his initial review of state election law, he can order the Democratic Party to insert a new nominee. Kobach plans to meet with his staff Thursday about that.
In a statement, the Roberts campaign said, "It makes clear what has been obvious from the start: Orman is the choice of liberal Democrats and he can no longer hide behind an independent smokescreen."
Earlier in the day, Orman was endorsed by a group of former moderate Republicans in the Kansas legislature, who are unhappy with the state GOP's conservative leanings.
Last week, The Hays Daily News posted an editorial calling for Taylor to pull out of the race, saying he couldn't beat Roberts but that Orman could.
Taylor is the district attorney in Shawnee County, home of the state capital of Topeka. He won the office in 2008 and was re-elected without opposition in 2012. In running for the Senate seat, he defeated Democratic challenger Patrick Wiesner by less than 4,000 votes in the primary election last month.
Below is a tweet sent via his campaign Twitter account late Wednesday afternoon:
Thanks to our supporters - financial, spiritual and emotional.— Chad Taylor (@Taylor4USSenate) September 3, 2014
Greg Orman released the following statement on Taylor's withdrawal:
“This is certainly an unexpected turn of events. Chad Taylor is a committed public servant. He ran an honorable campaign and worked hard, and I wish him and his family well."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.