Smith To Pull Plug on Gov Campaign; Will Back Riley
Smith seemed to want to run, but could never really find a rationale for her candidacy. Not to mention that it would have taken a minor miracle for her to be anything other than an afterthought in the gov race. But her flirtation with the governor's race has improved her name recognition and probably given her contacts throughout the state she wouldn't otherwise have. I'll be surprised if she doesn't pull the trigger on a run for higher office at some point in the next cycle or two.
This will be seen as a boost for Riley as Smith probably would have drawn more from the incumbent than challenger Roy Moore. Also, assuming the GOP field solidifies as a two man race, a runoff would be out of the picture. However, from Moore's point of view, he now has a monopoly on the anti-Riley vote. Of course the Riley camp can now say the same thing about the anti-Moore vote.
Ultimately, this has long been a two man race and a Smith candidacy was unlikely to change the fundamental dynamics at play. With Smith on the sidelines, Bob Riley and Roy Moore can now duke it out man to man sooner rather than later.