NEW ORLEANS — Gov. Edwin W. Edwards of Louisiana conceded to U.S. Rep. Buddy Roemer early Sunday and said he would not pursue a runoff election for a fourth term.
"I have determined . . . that it would be inappropriate for me to continue this election," Edwards told a hotel room full of shocked supporters at 1:20 a.m.
Edwards finished second to Roemer in Saturday's primary but conceded after two other major challengers said they would back Roemer.
With 3,176 of 3,262 precincts reporting, about 97%, Roemer had 514,315 votes, or 33%. Edwards had 440,443 votes, or 28%. Both are Democrats.
Roemer described Edwards' unexpected decision as "unbelievable." "He did it with class," Roemer said.
Edwards said he would pledge "the full cooperation and support" of his office to Roemer for the remainder of his term, which expires in March.