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First Republican Drops Out of Race to Replace Rep. Michele Bachmann

Sen. John Pederson, a longtime St. Cloud area public servant, said it was too much to juggle work, his legislative duties and his personal life as a father and husband.

And then there were three. 

Sen. John Pederson of St. Cloud announced today he is ending his run for the Sixth District Congressional seat, which is up for grabs in 2014 after Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, a one-time presidential candidate, decided she to not seek re-election. 

Pederson was considered to be a frontrunner by many within the Republican Party to challenge former gubernatorial candidate and Wright County legislator Tom Emmer for the nomination to square off against a DFL opponent in November. However, Pederson said today it was too difficult to juggle his responsibilities to the Minnesota Legislature as a senator, his work and his family life as well as a Congressional Campaign. 

"This decision weighed heavily on me and my family, and was made after much reflection and consideration. The priorities in my life have always been my faith, family and friends, my co-workers, and the wider community. It has become apparent to me that I cannot continue this campaign and still balance my other priorities in life. Because of this conflict I have decided to withdraw my name from the race.” said Pederson via a statement on his website. 

Pederson did not site money as a reason for withdrawing from the race, but Emmer was the clear choice when it came to donors. Emmer raised more than $400,000 in 2013, and was increasing his "war chest" lead monthly. 

Remaining candidates Phil Krinkie (a former member of the Minnesota House and leader of the Minnesota Taxpayers League) and Anoka County Commissioner Rhonda Sivarajah have both made self-payments of $300,000 and $150,000 respectively. 

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