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Another Dem Bites the Dust: Sen. Evan Bayh Retiring

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Adding to the uncertainty surrounding the 2010 congressional elections, Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., just announced that he wil not seek re-election. This bodes ill for the Democrats, who are facing significant challenges in several Senate elections.

The Democrats' Senate majority was whittled from a nominal 60 (counting independents Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who caucus with the Dems), to 59 several weeks ago when Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown won the seat long held by the late Sen. Ted Kennedy.

Even with the current distrust of Congress running high in the electorate, Bayh has remained a popular figure in Indiana, and until recent weeks, was regarded as a shoo-i with a $13 million war chest. But then former Sen. Dan Coats, a Republican, began making noises about entering the race and Bayh's fate became less certain.

Bayh's decision, coming when it did, does not speak well of his loyalty to his party. According to the Web site of KDKA, the Indianapolis CBS-TV affiliate:

Democrats will have to scramble to find a replacement candidate for Bayh's seat. Friday is the filing deadline for the May primary, although the party would have until June 30 to select a replacement candidate.