Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton has suspended his campaign for governor, according to a release from his campaign committee.
"It's been my honor to seek Connecticut's highest statewide office," Boughton said in a statement Wednesday. "However, I now believe it is time to suspend my candidacy and call for party unity behind the endorsed Republican candidate, Tom Foley."
Boughton kicked off his campaign in January and received enough suppport to challenge Foley in a primary in August. He had recently teamed up with Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti to pull funds and qualify for public financing.
According to the release, Boughton will release the staff on his campaign committee, Team Boughton, within the next few weeks.
"You know, one of the tough things about this is literally thousands of donors, thousands of people have helped us across the state of Connecticut," Boughton told NBC Connecticut on Wednesday. "None of them got paid for what they did, but they did it because they believed in our candidacy. That's what hurts here, but we have a very specific path to get to where we needed to go and unfortunatley we got thrown off that path and just didn't have a good enough backup plan to make that work. But no question, it hurts and we're disappointed."
Republican-endorsed candidate Tom Foley and State Senate Minority Leader John McKinney will face off in the August primary. Former West Hartford Town Councilor Joe Visconti is also vying for a spot on the ticket.
McKinney said he was surprised by Boughton's decision, explaining that it's "important that Republicans in Connecticut have a choice about who should take on Gov. Malloy in November."