PHOENIX -- The tea party Republican who sought former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' seat in Congress has dropped out of the fall race, two days after losing a special election to serve out her term.
Republican candidate Jesse Kelly made the announcement Thursday after, in his words, "looking at the results from Tuesday."
Kelly lost Tuesday's election to Democrat Ron Barber by 6 percentage points. Barber was a Giffords staffer when he was wounded in the mass shooting that critically wounded Giffords and led to her resignation in January.
It was Kelly's second losing race for the House seat. He lost to Giffords in 2010 by about 4,000 votes.
Barber is expected to be sworn in next week. He will have to win over voters again in the November general election.