The House District 27 Republican primary just became a head-to-head race.
Candidate Charlie White announced Thursday he would suspend his campaign and throw his support behind Chattanooga businesswoman Patsy Hazlewood.
"Our neighbors in District 27 deserve effective leadership and representation they can trust to solve problems and secure needed results. Patsy and I both desire to see excellence in our education system, as well as an increase in jobs and economic development in our region. Neither of us are fueled by any agenda or motive other than the prosperity of District 27," White said Thursday.
That means Hazlewood will face off with Tommy Crangle in the Aug. 7 primary.
Republican Tom McCullough bowed out of the race early.
Hazlewood said she appreciated White's support, and said their goals are aligned.
"In Nashville, it will be my job to promote legislation that best represents the needs and hopes of our district," Hazlewood said. "It's equally important that I work with our local governments to ensure our local needs and local goals are honored by our state and not overstepped."
Crangle said Thursday evening White's move was unexpected, but he welcomed a two-person race.
He has only faced Hazlewood in one forum.
"I think it will be an easier race on my part, with Charlie White not in the race," he said. "You never know who's going to switch parties and vote in another primary, but I think it will be a bit easier," Crangle said.
But Crangle said he wished White well.
The winner of the GOP primary will face Democratic candidate Eric McRoy in November.
House District 27, which is being vacated by Rep. Richard Floyd, R-Chattanooga, includes west Chattanooga, Lookout Mountain, Signal Mountain, Soddy-Daisy, Red Bank and other communities in the far west portion of the county.
The district seat is also the only contested House post in the county.
Contact staff writer Louie Brogdon at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 423-757-6481.