The Republican candidate for Secretary of State has dropped out. Chuck Allison, a foot doctor from West Des Moines, says after “much thought and prayer” he is dropping his bid against Democrat Michael Mauro to be Iowa’s next Secretary of State — Iowa’s Commissioner of Elections.

Cullen Sheehan, the executive director of the Republican Party of Iowa, says the party’s central committee will choose a replacement. “We need to send out a call and get the state central committee organized so it will take 10 to 12 days,” Sheehan says. “Obviously, first wee need to figure who’s interested in running and how many.”

Retired federal prosecutor Bob Dopf of Windsor Heights ran against Allison in the GOP primary this past June and Sheehan has already talked to Dopf this (Thursday) morning. But Sheehan isn’t saying whether Dopf is the party’s pick. “I know that there are others (interested in running as the GOP’s Secretary of State candidate),” Sheehan says. “I’m not going to speculate on what ultimately will happen.”

The party’s executive director says Allison dropped out for “largely personal” reasons. “I respect that decision and understand he wants to move and we wish him the best,” Sheehan says.

Iowa’s current Secretary of State, Chet Culver, is running for governor.