- Associated Press - Monday, November 16, 2015

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - A second-term Republican state senator says he has decided against a gubernatorial bid to succeed Gov. Jack Dalrymple, who is not seeking re-election in 2016.

State Sen. Tom Campbell, of Grafton, says in a statement Monday that “now is not the time to join the race.”

The 56-year-old businessman launched an exploratory committee in September to determine the level of support he could receive.

Republican state Rep. Rick Becker, a Bismarck plastic surgeon, was the first candidate to enter the gubernatorial race last month.

Republican Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has formed a committee to accept campaign contributions for a possible gubernatorial bid next year. Republican state Treasurer Kelly Schmidt also has expressed interest.

No Democrats have entered the race. Former Agriculture Commissioner Sarah Vogel says she is mulling a run.

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