BOSTON (MyFoxBoston.com/AP) -- Lt. Gov. Timothy Murray, in a surprise political announcement, said Friday that he had decided against a run for governor in 2014.
It had been widely believed that Murray, despite some setbacks including a 2011 car crash involving a state vehicle, was laying the groundwork for a campaign to succeed Gov. Deval Patrick, who has ruled out running next year for a third term.
"I have decided that I will not be a candidate for Governor in the 2014 election cycle," the letter read. "Nor will I be a candidate for any other statewide office in 2014.
The letter went on to say that he wants to focus more on his family.
"I have been grappling with how I can juggle a campaign and work duties with my responsibilities as a husband and the father of two active and beautiful daughters, Helen and Kati, who are 7 and 6 years old," the letter read.
Democratic State Treasurer Steve Grossman has said he is leaning strongly toward running. Donald Berwick, a former health care official in President Barack Obama's administration, has also said he is considering the race.
Possible Republican candidates include Charles Baker, who lost to Patrick in 2010, and former U.S. Sen. Scott Brown, if Brown eschews another run for Senate in a special election that would be held if Sen. John Kerry is confirmed as secretary of state.
Murray had collected nearly $447,000 in contributions through the end of December, according to an Associated Press review of state campaign finance records, the most of any of the state's constitutional officers.
The numbers reflected Murray's continued fundraising muscle despite a series of political setbacks, including an early morning crash in November 2011 in which he totaled his state-issued car.
A state police report said Murray was driving 108 mph just moments before his car sped off a state highway and overturned. He was not seriously injured but was issued a $555 ticket for speeding, not wearing a seat belt and a lane violation.
© 2016 Cox Media Group.