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Posted at 10:46 AM ET, 12/ 3/2010

Two drop out of race for Md. GOP chairman

By John Wagner
Republican Party

Update, 4:20 p.m.: Carmen Amedori told us late Friday afternoon that she has taken herself out of the running as well. "It is not a decision I made lightly," said Amedori, who lives in Ocean City. She said she will focus her party-building efforts in that part of the state.

Original post: Two previously announced contenders for chairman of the Maryland Republican Party -- Eric Wargotz and Andrew Langer -- have dropped out of the crowded field with a week to go before the party makes its choice.

Wargotz, the GOP's unsuccessful U.S. Senate nominee last month, issued a statement late Thursday saying he wants to focus on other political opportunities.

"In conjunction with family, friends, supporters and trusted advisers, I have reached the conclusion that although I am up for the challenge of leading this effort as chairman, I will forgo this unique opportunity at this time as I continue to strongly consider a run for elected office in the near future," Wargotz said.

Langer, a member of the Queen Anne's County Republican Central Committee, said he was dropping his bid to stay focused on the Institute for Liberty, a Washington-based advocacy group of which he is president.

"This was a tremendously hard decision to make -- as I've said, the state party is at a crossroads, and I believe I'm one of the people who can help it go down the right path," Langer said in a statement Thursday. "I could not, in good conscience, allow IFL to wither. So I had to make this choice."

The departure of Wargotz and Langer still leaves a half-dozen candidates in the hunt to take over the party chairmanship from Audrey E. Scott, who is stepping down. Here's a recap:

* Mary Kane: Running mate this year of former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R); former Maryland secretary of state; wife of John Kane, former Maryland GOP party chairman.

* Alex X. Mooney: Three-term state senator from Frederick; lost his reelection this year.

* William Campbell: The GOP's unsuccessful nominee for comptroller this year; a former chief financial officer for Amtrak.

* Carmen M. Amedori: Briefly served as running mate for GOP gubernatorial candidate Brian Murphy; former state delegate from Carroll County; former member of the State Parole Commission.

* Mike Esteve: Chairman of the Maryland College Republicans.

* Sam Hale: Founder of the conservative group Maryland Society of Patriots.

This post has been updated since it was first published.

By John Wagner  | December 3, 2010; 10:46 AM ET
Categories:  John Wagner, Republican Party  
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Next: Steele, Ehrlich pay tribute to departing Md. GOP chair

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