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Saturday, April 30, 2005

Vermont Governor Jim Douglas Not for Senate

Posted by Bob Brigham

Gov. Jim Douglas (R-VT) is between a rock and a hard spot. On one hand, he wants to be a U.S. Senator. On the other hand, Gov. Douglas knows he will lose if he runs against Rep. Bernie Sanders. So a lot of people are telling Douglas he'd have a better chance of holding an office if he focused on trying to get re-elected.

It sounds like we'll know what he's running for tomorrow. This has been moving rapidly, the local press has filed multiple stories in the last few hours.

The AP kicked things off:

MONTPELIER, Vt. Governor James Douglas is expected to announce tomorrow that he will seek re-election and not run for an open U-S Senate seat next year.

The governor is planning a news conference in Burlington, but the governor's top aides won't say what he plans to announce. [...]

Several political observers say since Douglas is making the announcement while the Legislature is in session it means he is sure to say he doesn't intend to run for the Senate.

And Channel 3:

Governor Jim Douglas announced today, he will make "an announcement" at an afternoon press conference at the University of Vermont.

And Channel 5:

Just nine days ago, Sen. Jim Jeffords announced he plans to retire at the end of his 18th year, in 2006.

Then, Douglas told reporters he's focusing on his job at the statehouse and has no timetable for making a decision.

That changed sometime on Friday.

Sources close to Douglas will only say that he's considered his options carefully and wanted to clear the air as soon as he could.

And back to Channel 3:

"I don't know. I guess I'll probably talk about my future political plans," he told Channel 3's Kate Duffy. Asked what they are he replied: "You'll have to come and see, Kate." Prodded for a sneak preview he smiled: "You wouldn't tell anyone, would you?"

Sen. Jim Jeffords, I-Vermont, announced last week he would retire instead of seeking a fourth term in Washington. Political insiders say if Douglas is making an announcement this early, it likely means he will seek re-election instead of a Senate seat.

"I'll have something to say about it tomorrow. I'm not being very helpful am I? I have to give the weekend crew something to do, right?" he joked. [...]

A decision the governor will keep secret until Saturday.

Reading through the articles, it seems to me the Vermont press corps has a problem with chain-yanking politicians. Announced an announcement? "You'll have to come and see"?

What a typical politician, thinking this is all some theatre that revolves around him. Jim Douglas doesn't get it, he especially doesn't get it on health insurance.

Posted at 01:02 AM in 2006 Elections - Senate, 2006 Elections - State, Vermont | Technorati