Breaux Bows out
Sen. John Breaux, a leading Democratic centrist and dealmaker who often votes with the Republicans, announced Monday he will not run for a fourth term next year.
Breaux, 59, becomes the fifth Southern Democrat in the Senate to step down in 2004, further compounding the party's difficulties in its struggle to retake control of the chamber. His departure creates a wide-open race in Louisiana.Let's keep it that way but I seem to recall the gargantuan effort put forth by the Bush squad to defeat Mary Landrieu in the last election. Hopefully the LA Democrats will be prepared and the seat will not be lost. Other than that, with Breaux's votes recently, from Anwar to Medicare it's difficult to view his departure as a loss to Democrats. Maybe that's his new career, he'll be a Republican advisor or perhaps we'll see him in Bush's cabinet if we don't manage to defeat the unelectable, impeachable one.
Four other Southern Democrats in the Senate have announced plans to retire in states where President Bush figures to run strongly next year: Bob Graham of Florida; John Edwards of North Carolina, Ernest Hollings of South Carolina and Zell Miller of Georgia.
Breaux was the youngest member of Congress when he was elected to the House in 1972 at the age of 28. He won his Senate seat in 1986.
His departure is expected to prompt two members of the state's congressional delegation to jump into the Senate race, Reps. Chris John, a Democrat, and David Vitter, a Republican. Both said they would announce their intentions later.
Republicans have not won a Louisiana Senate seat since Reconstruction.