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Posted by on Jan 6, 2010 in At TMV | 3 comments

A Split Decision In The Senate

As already reported here on TMV two US Senators, both Democrats, have announced they will retire. Chris Dodd of Connecticut has bowed to the inevitable and will retire while Byron Dorgan of North Dakota shocked many with his decision to step down.

This ends up as a split decision for the parties. Dorgan’s retirement is a major blow to the Democrats, the only chance they have of holding that seat is if Congressman Earl Pomeroy decided to run for the Senate and then his House seat would be very vulnerable. If GOP Governor Hoeven enters the race it’s pretty much a lock for the GOP.

On the other hand Dodd’s choice saves a seat for the Democrats. Although the blue nature of Connecticut meant that Dodd always had a shot of winning re-election most polls had shown him trailing his GOP rivals. So at best the seat was a tossup. Now that Dodd is out long time AG Blumenthal (D) will enter the race and that pretty much locks things up for the Democrats unless Governor Rell runs, which seems unlikely.

I suppose you could call it a slight gain for the GOP. Before the decisions were made you had one safe D seat (North Dakota) and one tossup seat that was maybe leaning GOP (Connecticut). Now you have one safe D seat (Connecticut) and one leaning to safe GOP seat (North Dakota).

Also retiring is Colorado governor Ritter (D). It’s hard to say which way this one goes. Ritter is unpopular and had been behind in the polls. His retirement opens things up to more popular Democrats. At the same time whatever Democrat is nominated will have some of the burden of Ritter without the benefit of incumbency. But this is probably a net wash in terms of impact.

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  • dduck12

    Dear Charlie: I am sending you this note by personal messenger (can’t trust emails or phones anymore, since that fascist B tapped everything), please burn after reading it in one of your apartments. It would be nice for everyone if you could “retire” and get the “Ethics” Committee off the hook. It is the newest trend in the Senate (is Harry next?) and it would really help.

  • Leonidas

    The Democrats will likely have better luck holding Dodd’s seat without him there, Scandal has been following the man like circling vultures.

  • DLS

    “Scandal has been following the man like circling vultures.”

    His father had scandals of his own, and wasn’t that earlier guy also a wild gun controller?

    Dodd the younger already had lost respect when he started lying and wheezing, appealing to stupid people, after the 1994 elections, and bellowing about Republican “extree-mists” [sic].

    Of course, there may be some who are so perverse or demented they may have lauded him for doing that. As it is, Connecticut is a Blue Nation state, so is likely to robotically elect another Dem and so wouldn’t be surprising if the next Dem it chose were also associated with various scandals. The thought I had when overhearing the news about Dodd (in addition to wondering if he might become a lobbyist, the best-paying kind of DC fixture or flea he could become), was to what extent the Dem replacement will be like Lieberman in not rushing to be too harsh on the insurers with health care “reform.” (Also on my mind was that most lefties probably don’t care about Countrywide Dodd’s scandals and may even want him to continue to behave badly about banking in Congress, but that these lefties have Connecticut on their minds mainly in that they’re not gunning for Dodd, but rather for Lieberman, for punishment if not wishing — I won’t say Hoping [tm], ha, ha — for replacement.)

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