Evan Bayh to retire
Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh will not seek re-election this year, a decision that hands Republicans a prime pickup opportunity in the middle of the country.
“After all these years, my passion for service to my fellow citizens is undiminished, but my desire to do so by serving in Congress has waned,” Bayh will say, according to prepared remarks obtained by the Fix. He will make the decision formal at a press conference later today.
Bayh was first elected to the Senate in 1998 and was re-elected easily in 2004. National Republicans had recruited former Sen. Dan Coats to challenge Bayh in 2010 although polling suggested Bayh began the race with a 20-point edge. He also had $13 million in the bank at the end of the year.
“My decision was not motivated by political concern,” Bayh is expected to say. “Even in the current challenging environment, I am confident in my prospects for re-election.”
Prior to being in the Senate, Bayh served two terms as governor of the Hoosier State. He also served briefly as Secretary of State.
His retirement is a blow for Senate Democrats. Bayh’s universal name recognition and popularity — not to mention his massive campaign warchest — made him a favorite in the fall despite the Republican tilt of the state and the increased focus of national GOP strategists on the contest.
Without Bayh, Democrats may look to their congressional delegation where Reps. Baron Hill, Brad Ellsworth and Joe Donnelly are likely to take a look at running.
It’s not clear whether the Republican field will grow. While national Republicans had rallied around Coats in recent days, the party may well take another run at Rep. Mike Pence who considered a challenge to Bayh before bowing out late last month.
No matter how the two fields shake out, holding the Indiana seat just got much harder for Democrats. Although President Barack Obama won the Hoosier State narrowly in 2008, it is generally regarded by strategists of both parties as swing territory with a slight edge for Republicans. The national playing field’s tilt toward Republicans makes the seat all the tougher for Democrats to hold.
Bayh is the fifth Democratic Senator not seeking re-election. He joins Sens. Chris Dodd (Conn.), Byron Dorgan (N.D.), Ted Kaufman (Del.) and Roland Burris (Ill.) on the sidelines. Six Republicans are not running again: Sens. Kit Bond (Mo.), George Lemieux (Fla.), Judd Gregg (N.H.), George Voinovich (Ohio), Sam Brownback (Kans.) and Jim Bunning (Ky.).
Evan Bayh was born on December 26th, 1955 according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evan_Bayh
December 26th, 1955
12 + 26 +1+9+5+5 = 58 = his life lesson = what he is here to learn = Wellness. Well being. Bodily health. Healthy body. Robust health. Strong constitution. Healthful. Hardy. Rest. Relaxation. Vacation. Time out. Time off. Recover. Restore. Recuperate…Sanctuary. Refuge. Retirement.