Chicago, IL, United States (4E) – After less than four months of campaigning, William Daley had a change of heart and is dropping out in the Illinois governor’s race.
Explaining his decision announced Tuesday, Daley cited the difficulty of governing in quitting during a press conference at a private downtown Chicago club on Wednesday.
“I cannot commit to what the voters may need,” said the former chief of staff to President Barack Obama and the son and brother of two former Chicago mayors, according to Chicago Tribune.
The 65-year-old Daley, who is making his first electoral bid against incumbent Gov. Pat Quinn, said he asked himself if he really wants to spend the next five to nine years of his life governing the fifth-most populous state with a massive fiscal debt and high unemployment.
“I’ve come to the conclusion that this isn’t the best thing for me,” he told reporters.
Daley was challenging Quinn for the latter’s failure to solve the $100 billion state pension debt. He believes he could beat Quinn in the March Democratic primary and get elected in next year’s election. Daley also believes Quinn won’t get re-elected.
Quinn welcomed Daley’s decision on Monday. It leaves him with no major rival in the Democratic primary. His GOP rival could be either be state Sen. Bill Brady of Bloomington, state Sen. Kirk Dillard of Hinsdale, state Treasurer Dan Rutherford of Chenoa and businessman Bruce Rauner.
Quinn defeated Brady in the 2010 election while Dillard lost to Brady in the Republican primary.