Republican McKee drops out of Mo. lt. gov’s race

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder’s decision not to enter the Missouri governor’s already is having ripple effects in Republican politics.

Kinder announced Friday that he will seek a third term as lieutenant governor instead of challenging Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon in the 2012 elections.

Later Friday, St. Louis businessman Chris McKee announced that he would drop out of the lieutenant governor’s race and instead support Kinder. It was a short-lived campaign for McKee, who had declared his candidacy Monday on the assumption that Kinder would run for governor.

Republican state Sen. Brad Lager, of Savannah, also declared his candidacy for lieutenant governor Monday. Lager said Friday that he is still in the race but will re-evaluate that decision after he gets a chance to talk with Kinder.

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