Deseret News
FILE: The Utah State Capitol.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Republican Party is dropping its legal challenge to a law allowing candidates to get on the primary ballot by gathering signatures.

Chairman James Evans says past rulings in the lawsuit have shown the party how to obey the law and still choose candidates that align with its principles.

The law passed in 2014 allows candidates to bypass the state's caucus and convention nominating system.

Critics said that system is too difficult for many people to get involved and can result in more extreme candidates. The group called Count My Vote was mainly made up of moderate Republicans and included former Republican Gov. Mike Leavitt.

The Utah Republican Party sued over the changes, arguing it has a constitutional right to determine how it picks its candidates.