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Merrill out of 13th District race

Max Merrill, a Somerset County farm advocate, is dropping out of the congressional race to focus on his work and family.

“Meeting with folks in each of the counties of the 13th District these past few months has been a blessing,” Merrill said in a press release. “This will not be the last political race I enter, rest assured. I am blessed to have learned so much this first time around.”

Merrill expressed his thanks to everyone who encouraged him to enter the race and to his volunteers for their time.

With Merrill dropping out of the race, there are now five Republican candidates vying for Bill Shuster’s seat: businessman Art Halvorson, engineer Travis Schooley, retired Army Col. Douglas Mastriano, state Rep. Stephen Bloom and state Sen. John H. Eichelberger Jr.

Two Democratic candidates, university professor Brent Ottaway and retired FBI agent Todd Rowley, also are running for Congress.

Candidates planning to run in the May primary must submit their nominating petitions to the Pennsylvania Department of State by today.

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