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William Daley drops out of race for Illinois governor

William Daley bowed out early on in the race for Illinois governor on Monday, leaving incumbent Pat Quinn unchallenged in the Democratic primary next March.

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In this Aug. 14, 2012 file photo, former White House Chief of Staff William Daley, left, and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg take part in a discussion economics and politics of immigration during a meeting of The Chicago Economic Club in Chicago.
Spokesman Peter Giangreco confirmed Monday, Sept. 16, 2013, that Daley was ending his bid for Illinois governor.

M. Spencer Green/ AP Photo/ File

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Former White House chief of staff William Daley abruptly dropped out of the race for Illinois governor Monday, signaling he wasn't sure he wanted to devote time to a long, hard campaign followed by at least four years in office.

The decision leaves Gov. Pat Quinn unchallenged in the Democratic primary next March, unless another candidate makes a late entry into the race.

Daley spokesman Peter Giangreco confirmed that the son of late Mayor Richard J. Daley and brother of former Mayor Richard M. Daley was ending what many had believed would be a serious challenge to the incumbent. Giangreco offered few details, saying more information would be offered Tuesday morning at a news conference with the Chicago Democrat.

Giangreco said only that Daley, 65, had been rethinking the decision about committing to a hard campaign and then one or two terms in office, as well as "what it's going to take" to dig Illinois out of its massive financial problems.

It would have been the first elected office for Daley, though he had served as a trusted adviser to two presidents, first as Bill Clinton's commerce secretary and then as Barack Obama's chief of staff after Rahm Emanuel left the post to make a successful run to succeed Richard M. Daley as mayor.

"There's nothing that prepares you for getting into these things," Giangreco said.

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