Lt. Gov. Mark Darr, a Republican, has dropped out of the race for a seat in Congress representing south Arkansas, he said in a statement on Thursday (Aug. 29).
“After careful thought and deliberation I will not be seeking the 4th District position in the United States Congress,” Darr said. “I feel that my priority needs to be focused on my family, and sometimes trying to achieve titles gets in the way of that.”
Darr entered the race for the 4th Congressional District seat on Aug. 12 after incumbent Tom Cotton announced plans to run for the U.S. Senate seat held by Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor.
Darr recently moved to Mansfield in the 4th District from his home in Springdale, which is in the 3rd Congressional District. The 3rd District is represented by Rep. Steve Womack, a Republican and former Rogers mayor who is seeking re-election.
Darr’s withdarwal from the race comes after Blue Hog Report, a left-learning blog, revealed Darr had filed campaign finance documents showing he spent money from earlier elections on items such as Razorback football tickets. Darr recently filed an Ethics Commission complaint against himself regarding the matter.
In the statement issued Thursday, Darr didn’t mention the ethics issue. He also declined to answer a follow-up question about his future political plans.
In the prepared statement, he said, “I look forward to serving out my current term as lieutenant governor and helping my friends get elected or re-elected should they desire my assistance.”
State House Majority Leader Bruce Westerman, R-Hot Springs, and Hot Springs businessman Tommy Moll are seeking the Republican nomination for the 4th District seat, while Hot Springs community college instructor Janis Percefull is running for the Democratic nomination.
Darr has served as lieutenant governor since 2011.