A candidate for the state House of Representatives said he will withdraw from the race, after the battle over redistricting in this year’s General Assembly moved him out of the district in which he had filed to run.
Louisa attorney Tim Robinson had filed to run as a Republican for the 97th District House seat currently held by Democratic Rep. Hubert Collins, of Wittensville. That filing was only made possible after a redistricting bill passed by the legislature moved a portion of Lawrence County into the 97th District, after removing three Floyd County precincts from the district.
That changed, however, after Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd ruled Feb. 7 that the redistricting plan was unconstitutional. The new plan was scrapped and the district returned to its 2002 boundaries. As such, the Floyd County precincts remain the 97th District, while the Lawrence County precincts have reverted to the 99th District.
A Secretary of State’s Office spokesperson said last week that candidates would remain on the ballot in the races for which they registered, even if they no longer lived in those districts, unless the candidates asked to withdraw.
Robinson said Monday he has already asked for the paperwork to withdraw from the race.
“I think the people of the 97th District deserve someone who lives in the district,” Robinson said.
Robinson did not rule out a future run for office, but said he’d had his eye on the newly-drawn 97th District, because it contained Johnson, Lawrence and Martin counties. He said would have enjoyed representing that district, because he grew up in Martin County, got his first job in Johnson County and currently lives in Lawrence County.
Robinson’s departure will mean no primary contest in the 97th District. In November, Republican Bobby Wayne McCool, a Big Sandy Community and Technical College administrator from Van Lear, will challenge Rep. Collins for his seat.