Sen. Dorgan to Retire at End of 2010

by Corey Boles
The Wall Street Journal
January 5, 2010

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Byron Dorgan (D., N.D.) said Tuesday he will retire from the Senate at the end of 2010, after representing North Dakota in Congress for three decades.

Sen. Dorgan is the first Democratic senator to decide not to seek re-election in what looks to be shaping up as a touch election cycle for the party.

Sen. Dorgan was likely to face a difficult re-election fight given that North Dakota is one of the reddest states in the country.

Republicans have yet to recruit a high profile candidate to challenge Sen. Dorgan, although they have been actively seeking one out.

In a statement, Sen. Dorgan said the prospect of a re-election battle didn’t factor into his decision to step down.

Sen. Dorgan had long fought to lift a ban on Americans seeking to import pharmaceutical drugs from other countries to help alleviate the high price of drugs in the U.S.

After several attempts by Sen. Dorgan to seek a vote on the matter, one was eventually held as part of the health care debate in the Senate last year.

But it was watered down in order to retain the support of other Democratic lawmakers for the wider health care effort.

More than 10 Democratic House members have announced plans to retire, many of them also from traditionally conservative parts of the country.

The article continues at WSJ.

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