Jones said in a statement that he's fine - for now - serving in the Senate because he's "able to remain active in my growing business and daily family life and activities."
The former Georgia football captain and heir to Jones Petroleum Co. would have been a formidable GOP candidate, able to leverage plenty of personal wealth in a run for higher office.
Jones said in an interview that he's staying out of the governor's race for the time being but would support Shafer, who he said has done a "terrific" job reaching out to grassroots Republicans.
His decision means that Shafer has dodged another bullet in his bid for Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle's job. Although there were weeks of rumbling from other Senate Republicans that they might challenge Shafer, none have yet emerged.
That means his main GOP opponent remains state Rep. Geoff Duncan, the former pro baseball player who announced in April. Cagle, of course, is running for governor.
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