Earlier tonight Jeff Smith, one of the five candidates vying to replace Mike Tate as Chair of the Democratic Party, released a statement withdrawing from the race and throwing his support behind fellow candidate Martha Laning.
Here’s Smith’s release.
Dear friends and supporters,
This campaign has been an extraordinary adventure. I recognize that together we’ve been able to propel the conversation in the direction it needs to go. I am confident that our party can heal and unify. Together, we can be the progressive agents we should be. If we rally around each other and embrace our strength through unity, we will win back our state.
In a recent letter, I stated how important it is that we unite. It is crucial that the leader of this party has majority support of all our delegates. We need to be able to restore trust and build confidence to make the Democratic Party of Wisconsin effective and return to the path of success.
My message has never wavered. It is a message of grassroots regional county party building and placing our faith in you, our members, over those of money changers.
Together with you, I will do all I can to fight for what is right for this great state and for our party. Therefore, I ask my supporters to join with me in casting their vote for Martha Laning for the next Chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.
I am excited for the potential that a new leadership style will bring to our party and to working with a team dedicated toward a true progressive Wisconsin.