MONTGOMERY, AL (WBRC) - Tim James has decided to end his bid to become the Republican candidate for governor of Alabama, clearing the way for Bradley Byrne and Robert Bentley to square off in a runoff for the nomination next month.
James announced the decision in a news conference in Montgomery Monday afternoon.
"This is just the way the ball bounced," James said.
James finished third in the Republican primary earlier this month, less than 300 votes behind Bentley. He challenged the results and paid for a statewide recount last week, but after counting the votes, James remained in third place, 270 votes behind Bentley.
"Unfortunately, it didn't change the outcome," James said. "I had no choice but to ask for a recount. We had to know for sure."
Byrne and Bentley will face each other in a runoff on July 13. James refused to offer support for either candidate, saying instead he was focusing on closing down his campaign offices and getting some rest.
I wish them the very best going forward," James said. "This is a very important time in Alabama."
The winner will face Ron Sparks in the general election in November.
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