Anne Arundel County Councilman John Grasso said Monday night that he's dropping out of the county executive's race in 2014.
Instead, the first-term councilman plans to run for re-election in his council district, which includes Glen Burnie and Millersville.
Grasso said he realized running for executive would take a lot of money and that he was up against two talented candidates in the Republican primary: Del. Steve Schuh and County Executive Laura Neuman.
"I'm happy with the candidates ... Laura's a good person, Steve's a good person," said Grasso, a Glen Burnie Republican. He wasn't sure he could differentiate himself enough from the other two candidates.
Grasso said he was still not quite at peace with his decision, because he felt he could win the race.
But the idea of "begging for money" didn't sit well with him. To finance a race himself, he figured he'd likely have to sell some of the rental properties he owns.
"I'm burning the candle at both ends," he said, and being county executive might be too much.
Grasso was the first Republican to announce a run for county executive last December. He's frequently waved signs at intersections to build name recognition.
Schuh and Neuman announced campaigns this year.
Joanna Conti, who ran and lost to John R. Leopold in 2010, is the only announced Democratic candidate for county executive.
Grasso said he wouldn't yet throw his support behind either Schuh or Neuman. For now, he said, he's "staying out of it."
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