Kansas GOP chairman drops out of race for secretary of state

TOPEKA — The Kansas Republican Party’s chairman has dropped out of the secretary of state’s race.

Kelly Arnold announced Thursday that he has ended his campaign for the GOP nomination so that he can “fully focus” on electing fellow Republicans to office this year.

Arnold has been the party’s state chairman since 2013 and has also served as Sedgwick County’s elected clerk since 2009.

Incumbent Secretary of State Kris Kobach is seeking the GOP nomination for governor.

The other Republicans running to replace Kobach are Kansas House Speaker Pro Tem Scott Schwab of Olathe, House Elections Committee Chairman Keith Esau of Olathe and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Craig McCullah of Topeka.

Democratic candidates include state Sen. Marci Francisco and former Google and Uber executive Brian McClendon. Both are from Lawrence.