Castle rules out write-in race

September 30, 2010

Congressman Mike Castle will not launch a write-in campaign for the U.S. Senate seat he once was heavily favored to win.
Castle had been considering the option of running as a write-in candidate since he lost to Tea Party favorite Christine O’Donnell in Delaware’s Republican primary election.

“While I would have been honored to represent Delaware in the U.S. Senate, I do not believe that seeking office in this manner is in the best interest of all Delawareans. Therefore, it’s time for Jane (his wife) and me to begin thinking about the next chapter of our lives,” Castle said in a statement Wednesday evening.

Castle, who’s had a long political career (nine-term Representative, governor, lieutenant governor and state legislator), said he had been encouraged by people in his state who wanted him to fight on and that he had carefully considered their viewpoints.

“I understand why people care so deeply about this election,” said Castle, one of the last Republican moderates in Congress.

O’Donnell’s primary campaign got a big boost with support from the conservative Tea Party and an endorsement from former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

Tom Ross, chairman of the Republican Party of Delaware, had been one of O’Donnell’s most outspoken critics and complained about “folks from out of state” who swooped in to back her. The party establishment had been counting on  Castle to coast to victory in November, giving Republicans an additional seat in the U.S. Senate.  O’Donnell’s prospects for winning the seat once held by Democrat Joe Biden are not as clear.

UPDATE to fix pronoun in second paragraph.

Photo Credit: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst ( Castle (R) with Sen. Tom Harkin (L) after a news conference in support of a stem cell research bill, Jan. 2007)

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