Dodd to quit
The big news today comes out of Washington where Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, is expected to announce he won’t seek re-election in November. (Ferraro, Reuters)
The news, coupled with another Democrat’s retirement announcement [Byron Dorgan of North Dakota], underscored the fragility of the Democrats’ Senate majority, which is just enough to push President Barack Obama’s agenda past Republican procedural obstacles.
Dodd’s retirement doesn’t mean Dems will lose the seat. Richard Blumenthal, CT’s very popular attorney general, will likely win it.
The aides offered no reason for Dodd’s decision, but it had been clear for months the Democratic lawmaker from Connecticut, dogged by questions over his financial industry connections, had faced the prospect of being voted out of office.
His participation in the Friends of Tangelo program is the issue here.
It remains to be seen how Dodd’s withdrawal from the race will influence how he handles two major jobs in the Senate this year — one as chief steward of financial reform and the other in the healthcare debate.
The House has passed its version of financial reform, but the Senate version is still in Dodd’s committee.