Citing the hurdles posed by a challenge to his nominating petitions, Jay Paterno, the former football coach and son of the late Penn State icon, Joe Paterno, announced yesterday that he is dropping from the campaign for the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor.
Mr. Paterno's petitions had been challenged by another candidate for the s3econd spot on the Democratic ticket, Harrisburg Councilman Brad Koplinski.
In a statement distributed by his campaign, Mr. Paterno said, "This afternoon I am announcing my intent to withdraw from the Lt. Governor's race. Over the past twenty-four hours in talking with attorneys it has become clear that the ballot challenge could be a long process with potential decisions and appeals carrying beyond Monday's hearing.
"With less than two months remaining before the primary I do not want an ongoing legal back and forth to be a distraction in this race. The outcome of this election is too important for the future of the working families and all the people of this Commonwealth.''
His withdrawal leaves a Democratic field including Mr. Koplinski, Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith, former U.S. Rep. Mark Critz, state Rep. Brandon Neuman, and state Sen. Mike Stack.