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Republican Bill Flynn takes early exit from U.S. Senate race

Days after losing his campaign manager, Republican Bill Flynn is withdrawing from the U.S. Senate race.

In a statement Thursday, he said his campaign ended Wednesday and blamed his poor campaign fundraising.

"Though deeply appreciative of every gift and effort made on behalf of this campaign, I have failed to secure the depth of funding essential to continue in this primary race,” he told Dome in a statement. “Washington’s deficit spending approach can be no part of a senate campaign dedicated to conservative principles.”

Flynn, a Winston-Salem area talk radio host, entered the race later than his competitors and becomes the first to depart. In a crowded race, Flynn had trouble distinguishing himself from the handful of other candidates seeking to wear the tea party mantle.

His campaign manager, Strategic Red’s Chris McCoy, left the campaign Monday. McCoy told Dome earlier this week that Flynn disagreed about how best to win the race for the Republican nomination. Flynn, McCoy said, wanted to retread the same ground from his losing 2012 bid for Congress, so they parted ways.

Flynn entered the race Nov. 10 and his radio voice from WEGO-980 AM gave him a commanding presence on the campaign trail. He enlisted C.L. Gray, a noted conservative health care pundit, as an adviser. His support in the Triad area would have likely taken votes from all the candidates, in particular Mark Harris, who grew up in the Triad, and Heather Grant, who lives not far away in Wilkesboro.

In the announcement he thanked his supporters. “Together we have focused attention on the very purpose of government, the limits of governmental authority, and the obligations of those who serve in elected office,” he said.

Five main candidates remain in the race: Thom Tillis, Greg Brannon, Mark Harris, Heather Grant and Ted Alexander. A sixth, Edward Kryn, entered Jan. 21.

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