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August 07, 2014 AT 2:11 PM
The Billings Gazette reported, Montana Democratic Senator John Walsh announced Thursday that he is dropping his Senate bid after it became clear that he could not overcome the fallout from a plagiarism scandal. Walsh, an Army veteran, was appointed to the Senate seat vacated by Max Baucus earlier this year after Baucus was appointed by the Obama administration to serve as U.S. ambassador to China. However, a New York Times story in late July revealed that Walsh had plagiarized significant amounts of text in a thesis that earned him a masters degree from the Army War College in 2007. The college is conducting a review that could strip him of his degree. His decision to bow out comes before a critical Monday deadline. The Democrats' State Central Committee has until Aug. 20 under state law to choose a replacement candidate for the November ballot.