Mary Ann Fabrizi, who was running as an independent candidate for Mahoning County Probate Court judge, is out of the race.
Fabrizi of Berlin Center officially withdrew Wednesday for the seat.
That leaves Robert Rusu, an independent selected last week by Republican Gov. John Kasich to fill the vacant seat starting July 8, and Susan Maruca, who won the Democratic primary for the post, as the only candidates for the job in the November general election.
Fabrizi said after failing to get the governor’s appointment, she decided to get out of the race.
“I didn’t get it, so it was better for me to withdraw,” she said.
“I prefer to have two qualified candidates for office, and both are qualified candidates.”
Fabrizi said she couldn’t win the election without the appointment.
Rusu of Canfield said Fabrizi’s withdrawal “isn’t going to change the way I’m approaching the race. I’m going to campaign the same way.”
“I respect whatever decision [Fabrizi] makes,” said Maruca of Poland.
“My focus is not on any particular opponent. I don’t think this has any effect on the race. She was in the race for such a short time, so we didn’t have the chance to learn about her platform.”
Rusu will serve the unexpired term of Mark Belinky, a Democrat, who resigned March 14 while under criminal investigation. He was found guilty May 8 of a felony count of tampering with records. Belinky’s term expires Feb. 8, 2015.
Visiting Judge R.R. Denny Clunk, who has run the probate court on an interim basis since Belinky’s resignation, will swear in Rusu at 12:30 p.m. July 8 in the courthouse rotunda.