ANCHORAGE - Just days after being certified for the November ballot, the running mate for independent gubernatorial candidate Andrew Halcro has dropped out of the race.
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Lieutenant Governor candidate Ken Lancaster has asked to be removed from the ballot for personal reasons, Halcro said.
"I think it's a personal family issue, and I didn't press, I wanted to respect Ken's privacy," Halcro told Anchorage television station KTUU.
Lancaster, reached Friday by The Associated Press, said he did not want to belabor the point and that Halcro's campaign needed to move on.
He said his withdrawal was not due to a conflict with Halcro, although he said "there just wasn't a great deal" of communication between the running mates.
"While we may not have communicated as well as I would have liked ... I look forward to his getting elected," Lancaster said.
The state Division of Elections on Tuesday said both Halcro and Lancaster had turned in sufficient signatures to be placed on the November ballot.
Halcro and Lancaster, both former Republican state representatives, were required to collect 3,145 signatures, or 1 percent of Alaska's 2004 election turnout.
There's no provision in state law to replace a candidate on the ballot who achieved that status through the petition process.
But the Department of Law on Thursday advised the Division of Elections to allow a candidate to fill the vacancy.
Lt. Gov. Loren Leman on Thursday signed an emergency order allowing Halcro the same opportunity to find a replacement afforded major party candidates.
Halcro said he would name a replacement on Monday.
Lancaster's withdrawal will not cause problems with ballots since they haven't been printed yet.
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