Liz Linehan took a moment with her restless sons as she was introduced by Dan Drew. file photo /
Liz Linehan took a moment with her restless sons as she was introduced by Dan Drew as his running mate in September, file photo /

Middletown Mayor Dan Drew, the first Democrat in the race to succeed Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, ended his campaign Friday, two days after filing a finance report showing it with more debt than cash. His running mate, Rep. Liz Linehan of Cheshire, also quit the race for lieutenant governor.

“After discussions between us and with our families, we have decided to end our campaigns for governor and lieutenant governor of Connecticut,” they said. “Ultimately it became very difficult to raise the required funds to qualify for public financing. Other campaigns are on their way, and we look forward to supporting the Democratic team.”

The announcement was expected. It came one year to the day after Drew opened an exploratory campaign, three months before Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced he he would not seek re-election.

In a report filed late Wednesday night, Drew reported raising $37,581 in the final three months of 2017, ending with $7,877 in cash on hand and unpaid bills of $16,079. His running mate, Linehan, added little to the ticket’s cash flow, raising $9,661 with $3,237 in available funds and unpaid bills of $6,300.

“We’ll see how things go,” Drew said Thursday morning, when asked if he could continue his campaign.

Drew exits as Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin and former Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz are preparing to run. Bronin raised $113,710 in less than a month as an exploratory candidate. Bysiewicz, who has shifted the focus of her exploratory campaign in recent months from state Senate to governor, raised $105,372 in the final quarter and ended the year with $90,433 in available cash. Neither has debt.

“We’ll continue to work for a society that protects people who need it, provides opportunity, and that doesn’t exploit the vulnerable,” Drew and Linehan said. “It’s been an honor to pursue that goal. We will be by your side in pursuing it in the future.”

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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