The race for Jake Wheatley's state house seat lost a candidate Tuesday as Aerion Abney announced he was dropping out of the race to represent the 19th Legislative District.
"As a lifelong Democrat and a former Democratic committeeman, I have nothing but the utmost respect for the Allegheny County Democratic Committee and the annual endorsement process. Unfortunately, our campaign did not win the 2016 Primary Election endorsement, and as a result of the decisive vote, I have decided to withdraw from the race and end my campaign for State Representative, PA-19," Abney said in a statement.
Abney is a program director at the POISE foundation, an African-American community foundation. He also serves on the boards of Community Human Services Inc., the Hill District Federal Credit Union and the Human Services Center Corporation.
"I would like to thank everyone who has supported, volunteered, and donated to my campaign. Although I am no longer running for office, I believe there is still much work to be done for the residents who call PA-19 home. I plan to continue to work on empowering our communities, creating employment opportunities, and improving public safety across Pittsburgh," Abney concluded in the statement.
Abney's withdrawal leaves Wheatley with a sole challenger — social worker Jessica Wolfe — in the April Primary. Both Abney and Wolfe's husband Ken Wolfe previously worked as aides for Wheatley.