A fourth Senate Republican won’t seek reelection

January 12, 2009

WASHINGTON – Democrats came up just short of a winning a filibuster-proof majority of 60 in the 100-member Senate in last November’s election.  But they may do it in next year’s contest — thanks largely to a rising number of Senate Republicans calling it quits.

George Voinovich — a highly respected, two-term moderate — on Monday became the fourth Senate Republican to announce he won’t seek reelection in 2010.CAMPAIGN BUSH

Voinovich’s decision followed earlier such announcements by Republican Sens. Sam Brownback of Kansas, Mel Martinez of Florida and Kit Bond of Missouri.

So far, there’s been no official word that any of the Democrats up for reelection next year won’t seek another term — though Vice President-elect Joe Biden’s pending Senate replacement is expected to step aside in 2010. That would open the way for an anticipated run by Biden’s son Beau Biden, Delaware’s attorney general.

Traditionally, Senate incumbents have a number of advantages over challengers, including name recognition and the ability to raise money.

Voinovich, who next year will mark his 74th birthday and 44th year in public office, said it’s time for him to move on.

“I still have the fire in my belly to do the work of our nation, but after serving the next two years, it will be time to step back,” Voinovich said in a statement.

Democrats now have 57 seats in the Senate, and may soon hit 59. A legal challenge is expected to be decided within weeks of Democrat Al Franken’s razor-close victory in Minnesota.

And Democrats hope to soon resolve a dispute over embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich‘s appointment of Roland Burris to fill the seat vacated by President-Elect Barack Obama.

Democrats have resisted seating Burris because Blagojevich is accused of having earlier tried to sell the seat. But with the blessing of Obama, they seem to be determined to soon reach an “amicable solution.”

Photo Credit: Reuters/Mannie Garcia (Sen. George Voinovich with President George W. Bush in 2004)


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Excellent. Please vote third party for his replacement. No more Demublicans in office!

Posted by jason | Report as abusive

The GOP base is driving the moderates from their party, making it even further right than it is now. Heckuva way to create a permanent majority.

Posted by jimbo | Report as abusive

There won’t be a permanent democratic majority.

The guy is 74 years old now and will be 76 when his term is ends in 2010. The guy deserves to retire. The media is making a big deal out of nothing. In 2010, republicans will likely pick up seats rather than lose them like they did this year.

The democrats lost big starting in 1994 in both houses of congress and the talk then was about a permanent republican majority.

Well, in politics nothing is forever. The republicans will be back just like the democrats came back. To think otherwise is foolish and naive.

Posted by TC | Report as abusive

“Demublican”? There’s talk of Tim Ryan seeking the position — DEFINITELY no “dino” and DEFINITELY a fighter for the average working class American. He’s just the kind of Senator EVERY American needs, regardless of party.

Posted by WMG | Report as abusive

The reason the Dems came back is that they took their party back from the politically correct left wing, and gave the GOP enough rope to hang itself. The GOP lost in 2006 and 2008 because it became clear to the electorate that the GOP ideology will not and cannot work, and that it is diametrically opposed to their economic best interests. Laissez faire economics will never work, and tax cuts for the rich will never trickle down, yet after being drubbed in two successive elections BECAUSE of their ideology, the GOP’s answer is that they weren’t conservative enough. That is the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. They have become captives of their whacko right wing, and until they shake themselves free of the wingnuts on the extreme right, they will never come back as a national party. The Dems may be naive, but the GOP is certifiably insane, and naive beats insane every time, because naivete can be cured through experience, but there is no cure for the insanity currently gripping the GOP. They won elections by lying to an American public unaware they were being lied to, but once they became aware of the lie, it lost its power. The transition from ignorance to enlightenment is a one way street. Once enlightened, always enlightened. Short of amnesia, there is no possible return to ignorance, by definition. The GOP strategy of peddling the same old lies to the electorate is therefore based on an impossibility, and therefore doomed to fail. Ask yourself, “What truth does the GOP have to bring voters back to the fold?” The answer is they have none.

Posted by zoombwaz | Report as abusive

Hey the election is over guys, no need to keep blogging everything in sight to deflect attacks away from Obama. Now maybe we can get the real story on the Chicago mob connections and Rev. Wright. There are still a lot of Red states out there and a lot of people who still believe in God and the rights of babies. So let’s just see how many Republicans get elected in four years after your party gets the blame for every natural disaster yet to come. And wait for those Global warming cap-and-trade nuts to start taxing and beating our standard of living back to the stone age, then we will see how many people vote Democratic.

Posted by overwithit | Report as abusive

Democratc + Republicans= same solution.

Posted by jason | Report as abusive