U.S. Senate candidate Jack Ryan released the following statement Friday, June 25, 2004:

"Thirteen months ago, I announced my determination to seek the Republican nomination for the United States Senate. I entered this race because I love my country and my home state of Illinois and because I believe that one man, living for purposes larger than himself, can make a difference.

"The media has gotten out of control. The fact that the Chicago Tribune sues for access to sealed custody documents and then takes unto itself the right to publish details of a custody dispute over the objections of two parents who agree that the re-airing of their arguments will hurt their ability to co-parent their child and will hurt their child is truly outrageous.

"The debate between competing visions and philosophies is a vital one the voters of Illinois absolutely deserve. Elections, after all, are about choices. But it's clear to me that a vigorous debate on the issues most likely could not take place if I remain in the race.

"What would take place, rather, is a brutal, scorched-earth campaign — the kind of campaign that has turned off so many voters, the kind of politics I refuse to play.

"Accordingly, I am today withdrawing from the race.

"To the 234,000 Republican voters who cast a ballot for me in March, to the thousands of supporters and volunteers who have invested in our campaign the two most precious resources they have — their time and their money — I say thank you. I will never be able to properly express the depth of my gratitude for the trust you placed in me."