Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis has ended his New Jersey state senate bid just days after a federal appeals panel removed him from the ballot because he didn't meet a four-year residency requirement.
Lewis, 50, was forced to either drop out or continue the fight in court. Despite his decision to concede, he vowed he would continue to participate in Democratic campaigns and charity work.
"Service does not need a title," Lewis said on Friday.
Over the past few months, Lewis has been ensnarled in a legal battle against the constitutionality of a ruling by New Jersey’s Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, who also serves as secretary of state. Guadagno charged that Lewis was ineligible to run for office because he does not meet the state’s four-year residency requirement. Lewis owns two homes in New Jersey, but lived in California for the past several years and voted there in 2008 and 2009.
The federal appeals panel’s ruling on Thursday comes just weeks before the Nov. 8 election and just as ballots are to be prepared and sent to absentee voters.
(Photo: AP Photo/Mel Evans)