Breaking: Bayh will retire; Update: Dems have four days until tomorrow to find candidate

posted at 10:50 am on February 15, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Bye bye, Evan Bayh:

Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh will not seek re-election this year, a decision that hands Republicans a prime pickup opportunity in the middle of the country.

“After all these years, my passion for service to my fellow citizens is undiminished, but my desire to do so by serving in Congress has waned,” Bayh will say.

Bayh will announce the decision at a press conference later today.

Indiana would not have likely sent Bayh back for a third term in any event.  The entry of Dan Coats into the race gave Republicans at least one strong, credible candidate (there are others either declared or interested) to challenge Bayh on his support for the Obama agenda.  Bayh had recently tried to rebuild his centrist credibility, but his vote to allow ObamaCare to come to a floor vote undermined his supposed independence.

The only hope Democrats had in holding the Indiana seat was in keeping Bayh in the race.  The state relies on coal energy anyway, and the upcoming cap-and-trade bill would have hammered a state already suffering more than most from the Great Recession.  It usually skews conservative, and most certainly would have done so in the midterms, even with Bayh remaining in the race.

The next question will be which red-state Senate Democrat follows Bayh into retirement.  I’d bet that Blanche Lincoln may be considering her options in Arkansas, especially after Bayh’s decision to leave.  (via Geoff A)

Update: Bayh has managed to put his fellow Democrats in a real bind by waiting until the last minute to make this decision:

Bayh’s decision will set Dems scrambling for a replacement. The deadline to file to reach the ballot is Friday, meaning any Dem considering running for the seat must make a decision quickly.

One option would be Rep. Baron Hill, who as Reid notes beat an incumbent Republican in 2006 (so did Reps. Joe Donnelly and Brad Ellsworth).  Unfortunately, two problems will arise with Hill, the first of which is that this isn’t 2006 and he’s in trouble to hold that seat.  The second is this video, in which Hill takes his first name a wee bit too seriously:

That will get played endlessly in Indiana no matter which race Hill chooses to contest.

Update II: Geoff points out that Bayh had considerably more reasons to stick around than some red-state Democrats:

The Scott Brown election to the Massactuetts Senate seat formerly held by Teddy Kennedy last month may have played a role in Bayh’s thinking. Considering the bankroll Bayh’s reelection campaign is carrying ($13 million) and his lead now in the polls, Bayh’s surprise announcement will surely be scrutinized by the political world for Bayh’s true rationale and the effects on politicians planning to remain in DC.

His “lead” was over state-level challengers, not necessarily Dan Coats, who hadn’t been in the mix long enough to get polled.  Bayh couldn’t get above 45% against anyone, a bad position for any incumbent.  The $13 million is a good point, though, and at least Bayh was competitive.  Looking at Lincoln’s numbers, or those of Harry Reid, in comparison put Bayh in a relatively stronger position in his race, at least until he quit.

Update III: National Journal has updated their story — the filing deadline is actually tomorrow:

Update: The filing deadline is tomorrow, not Friday, as we wrote earlier. Dem sources say Ellsworth is the candidate most likely to jump into the contest.

Update IV: Steve from No Runny Eggs points out that Democrats can nominate someone through the caucus process if no one signs up to run in time.  That’s true in most caucus states.  However, that process is almost certain to produce a liberal ideologue — the exact opposite of what Indiana Democrats need for the midterms.  They’d better hope they can get Ellsworth qualified in time.

Update V: How hard will it be to get a nominee on the ballot using the normal process? Justin Riemer, who worked for McCain in 2008 as Associate Counsel and is now with the RNLA, describes the degree of difficulty in an e-mail to me:

Ed,

I worked on getting McCain on the ballot in Indiana for the 2008 primary. I can tell you there it will be very very difficult to get this done in a few days. It took considerable resources for the campaign to get on the ballot there and we allocated a few months to do it. Even with having three full time staffers on it for several weeks, we barely made it. The signatures also need to be filed in each county’s election board of elections offices. Those are closed today. I don’t even know if they have the ability to get the hard copies of the petitions due to the holiday.

In other words, it will probably require Ellsworth (or anyone else) to use the caucus process.  Messy, messy, messy, as anyone who has worked in the caucus process can attest.


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Nope–the ball’s in your court now…YOUR turn to refute the statements…

lovingmyUSA on February 15, 2010 at 7:29 PM

They haven’t provided any evidence. I don’t know where you get the records of what every single President spent and have it adjusted for inflation. If I knew where to get it, I’d have posted it by now. I’m asking for proof. This isn’t a debate – Hornetsting made a claim, now back it up with the data.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:32 PM

Nope–the ball’s in your court now…YOUR turn to refute the statements…

lovingmyUSA on February 15, 2010 at 7:29 PM
They haven’t provided any evidence. I don’t know where you get the records of what every single President spent and have it adjusted for inflation. If I knew where to get it, I’d have posted it by now. I’m asking for proof. This isn’t a debate – Hornetsting made a claim, now back it up with the data.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:32 PM

Keep holding your breath, obamatwat. If you cannot see that obama has SPENT MORE MONEY than any other president, then, there is no hope for you.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 7:38 PM

more spending in ONE year than ALL PRESIDENTS FROM W BACK TO WASHINGTON COMBINED?

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 2:45 PM

They haven’t provided any evidence. I don’t know where you get the records of what every single President spent and have it adjusted for inflation. If I knew where to get it, I’d have posted it by now. I’m asking for proof. This isn’t a debate – Hornetsting made a claim, now back it up with the data.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:32 PM

If you cannot see that obama has SPENT MORE MONEY than any other president, then, there is no hope for you.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 7:38 PM

FAIL.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:42 PM

If you live in Indiana, go to Ace’s page and help get this leftist Democrat on the ballot. ASAP

http://www.ace.mu.nu/

kagai on February 15, 2010 at 7:42 PM

FAIL.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:42 PM

Yes, you are, obamatwat.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 7:45 PM

Obama is out of control

http://blog.heritage.org/2009/03/24/bush-deficit-vs-obama-deficit-in-pictures/

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:48 PM

Yes, you are, obamatwat.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 7:45 PM

Good one. Clever, my nephew uses that “I know you are but what am I” line to devastating effect, and, like you, he has the mental capacity of a 6 yr old. Although in his case, it’s forgivable, since he’s actually 6. I don’t know what your excuse is.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:48 PM

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:48 PM

Fail. Doesn’t substantiate the claim.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:49 PM

HotAir commentariat,

WE NEED GET SARAH PALIN TO INDIANA! OVERNIGHT!

Go to Ace of Spades HQ for the background – there is a hard-left democrat who needs 4500 petition signatures (500 from each of Indiana’s 9 Congressional districts) to get on the ballot as the Democrat nominee for Evan Bayh’s seat, otherwise the Indiana state party machine gets to pick the nominee!

Please paste this “Bat Signal” (or Moose Signal) where her web people can detect it and get the word to her:

Her FaceBook page

Free Republic

…etc.

Sarah can draw at least 1000 hardcores anywhere she goes. Sarah, pick a few key districts, put out a notice thru your web channels, and just show up! Ace’s Morons will sweep the crowd for the signatures.

DanOwillbookem on February 15, 2010 at 7:49 PM

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:49 PM

I wasn’t arguing with you bot. The reality his spending is insane . Agree? or you just the ahole I usually encounter?

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:50 PM

Rino the reality is you live in an alternative world.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:50 PM

I wasn’t arguing with you bot. The reality his spending is insane . Agree? or you just the ahole I usually encounter?

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:50 PM

Yes you were, the original post is about Evan Bayh, and the discussion that I was having with Hornetsting while he periodically wrote in all caps and said things that were wrong was about how much Obama was spending, and you posted a link about Obama’s spending.

And I’m pointing out that your link does not substantiate Hornetsting’s ridiculous claim.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:53 PM

RINO – from Dick Morris

Here are the facts:

In 2008, Bush ran a deficit of $485 billion. By the time the fiscal year started on October 1, 2008, it had gone up by another $100 billion due to increased recession-related spending and depressed revenues. So it was about $600 billion at the start of the fiscal crisis. That was the real Bush deficit.

But when the fiscal crisis hit, Bush had to pass TARP in the final months of his presidency which cost $700 billion. Under the federal budget rules, a loan and a grant are treated the same. So the $700 billion pushed the deficit — officially — up to $1.3 trillion. But not really. The $700 billion was a short term loan. $500 billion of it has already been repaid.

So what was the real deficit Obama inherited? The $600 billion deficit Bush was running plus the $200 billion of TARP money that probably won’t be repaid (mainly AIG and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac). That totals $800 billion. That was the real deficit Obama inherited.

Then…he added $300 billion in his stimulus package, bringing the deficit to $1.1 trillion. This $300 billion was, of course, totally qualitatively different from the TARP money in that it was spending not lending. It would never be paid back. Once it was out the door, it was gone. Other spending and falling revenues due to the recession pushed the final numbers for Obama’s 2009 deficit up to $1.4 trillion.

So, effectively, Obama came close to doubling the deficit.

Obama’s out of control . SO you can twist and turn but I am right and you are wrong. As usual.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:53 PM

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 7:45 PM
Good one. Clever, my nephew uses that “I know you are but what am I” line to devastating effect, and, like you, he has the mental capacity of a 6 yr old. Although in his case, it’s forgivable, since he’s actually 6. I don’t know what your excuse is.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:48 PM

I’m not the one that voted for obama, so you will forever be saddled with THAT mistake, as will your children, your grandchildren, and so on…that is, if any woman ANYWHERE has the grace to take pity on you.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

Rino the reality is you live in an alternative world.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:50 PM

In my world, you have to back up your claims of fact with some data. I guess that’s now how you guys do it? Just make up whatever you want or something, huh?

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

We must shrink government!

Evan Bayh’s decision should wake up everyone who wasn’t already awake…

dnlchisholm on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

And I’m pointing out that your link does not substantiate Hornetsting’s ridiculous claim.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:53 PM

Actually no I wasn’t arguing hornets point. You’re and idiot.

I was just making the point that the spending is out of control even when compared to Bush ya bot. Hilarious. Farg off.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

Obama’s out of control . SO you can twist and turn but I am right and you are wrong. As usual.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:53 PM

Doesn’t substantiate the claim. Keep trying.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

Proud Rino – who has the audacity to question whether Teh One has spent more $$$ than all Presidents in history combined

Proud Rino: From now on do your own ^%$&* research. Since you’re too fu%^$ng lazy to even type in words at Google, I’ll give you this url – which shows Obama will have spent TWICE as much as all previous Presidents combined (extrapolating his expenditures out for 10 years)

http://www.heritage.org/Research/Features/BudgetChartbook/?CFID=56953727&CFTOKEN=53852018

alwyr on February 15, 2010 at 7:55 PM

You’re and idiot.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

LOL

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:55 PM

Just make up whatever you want or something, huh?

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

Actually it appears I have provided much more information than you. Hilarious. You world is whacked.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:55 PM

alwyr on February 15, 2010 at 7:55 PM

Doesn’t substantiate the claim. Do you know what numbers are?

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:56 PM

Doesn’t substantiate the claim. Keep trying.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

My claim was that the spending is out of control . So yeh my point is true. Nice try trying to make my point part of your lame argument.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:56 PM

Actually it appears I have provided much more information than you. Hilarious. You world is whacked.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:55 PM

Yes but nothing that proves your point. Fail.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:57 PM

Rino

So, effectively, Obama came close to doubling the deficit.

Obama’s out of control . SO you can twist and turn but I am right and you are wrong. As usual.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:53 PM

You are insane.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 7:58 PM

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:57 PM

You sure are hung up on the word fail . I suspect it is your middle name. I just showed that Obama doubled the deficit so thus the spending is out of control. You idiots kill me.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:00 PM

If you can read the Tea leaves, or the writing on the whitehouse walls, one can see a Democratic vision of hopelessness under Obama’s Un-American leadership.

Maybe Bayh got lied to, maybe Bayh was fooled also ?

BUT….He is still in office for a few months, lets see how he acts.

Lets see if he starts/leads a Democratic turnaround, and gets a Cabinet appointment in 2011 as a reward, and supposedly leads a Two Year comback.

But what he did, HAS GOT TO HURT !

JayTee on February 15, 2010 at 8:01 PM

Funny Rino how you act like child even when presented the facts but hey we all know that is classic ProudRino.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:01 PM

In my world, you have to back up your claims of fact with some data. I guess that’s now how you guys do it? Just make up whatever you want or something, huh?

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 PM

In your world, you worship obama, you obamatwat, so don’t sit here and try to lecture us.
Kingjester gave you to a link from the Wall Street Journal earlier, but evidently, YOU did not read, that stated obama has spent as much money as all presidents thru 43 combined….Now, I was unable to find another link to this statement, it came from the Wall Street Journal, but the reality is, that obama is spending us into the poor house.
Now, if you want to call THAT a fail, fine.
But, the simple fact is~your kids, your kids kids, futures are hanging in the balance~AND IT IS BECAUSE OF OBAMATWATS LIKE YOU THAT VOTED FOR THE IDIOT.
So, keep stating ‘fail’ ‘fail’ ‘fail’.
BUt, Rino, YOU are the true failure here.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 8:02 PM

You sure are hung up on the word fail . I suspect it is your middle name. I just showed that Obama doubled the deficit so thus the spending is out of control. You idiots kill me.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:00 PM

I’m hung up on it because you keep failing.

The original claim was that Obama spent more in one year than every other President had combined, from Washington to George W. Bush. Not “He spends a lot.” Not “He spends too much.”

If you want to make this argument about something else, fine, but first admit that Hornetsting was wrong and you’re sorry.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 8:03 PM

Kingjester gave you to a link from the Wall Street Journal earlier, but evidently, YOU did not read, that stated obama has spent as much money as all presidents thru 43 combined….Now, I was unable to find another link to this statement, it came from the Wall Street Journal

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 8:02 PM

I did read it! The article didn’t link to any data either! See, it turns out that I don’t actually trust some editorial when it makes unsubstantiated claims any more than I trust you morons when *you* make unsubstantiated claims!

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 8:04 PM

And *I* couldn’t find another link to support that statement either! Isn’t that fishy, Hornet?

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 8:06 PM

ProudRino you continue on like a child. I am not arguing Hornets point but go ahead with your immaturity.

I realize it is hard for you to handle more than one thought at a time but bear with me.

From Heritage:

Before the recession, federal spending totaled $24,000 per U.S. household. President Obama would hike it to $32,000 per household by 2019— an inflation-adjusted $8,000-per-household expan sion of government.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:07 PM

Anyway, nice try, champs. Maybe next time. Thanks for playing. See ya later.

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 8:08 PM

Notice how ProudRino brings no facts and doesn’t even try. Nothing.

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:08 PM

Run like the scared child Rino

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:09 PM

And *I* couldn’t find another link to support that statement either! Isn’t that fishy, Hornet?

Proud Rino on February 15, 2010 at 8:06 PM

No, but your mom is.
I’d believe the WSJ over the obama admin ANYDAY.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 8:10 PM

Yah, dat be it, fur sur. Eh!

Yoop on February 15, 2010 at 6:30 PM

Yoop: Dis be to,er true!!:)

canopfor on February 15, 2010 at 8:12 PM

LiquidH2O…I actually like canofor using my name, because he is talking to me and I am sure the other posters will agree…we likey. ( :

yoda on February 15, 2010 at 6:44 PM

yoda:)

canopfor on February 15, 2010 at 8:13 PM

Bayh runs third party in 2012 and splits the dem vote and sarah wins with the GOP and conservative united

ConservativePartyNow on February 15, 2010 at 8:16 PM

I’d believe the WSJ over the obama admin ANYDAY.

HornetSting on February 15, 2010 at 8:10 PM

Who doesn’t like Obama-arithmetic?

MeatHeadinCA on February 15, 2010 at 8:18 PM

More on or Moron Obama spending from heritage

President Bush expanded the federal budget by a historic $700 billion through 2008. President Obama would add another $1 trillion.[3]

President Bush began a string of expensive finan cial bailouts. President Obama is accelerating that course.[4]

President Bush created a Medicare drug entitle ment that will cost an estimated $800 billion in its first decade. President Obama has proposed a $634 billion down payment on a new govern ment health care fund.
President Bush increased federal education spending 58 percent faster than inflation. Presi dent Obama would double it.[5]

President Bush became the first President to spend 3 percent of GDP on federal antipoverty programs. President Obama has already in creased this spending by 20 percent.[6]

President Bush tilted the income tax burden more toward upper-income taxpayers. President Obama would continue that trend.[7]

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:23 PM

Must just be keeping up with inflation /

http://www.heritage.org/Research/Budget/images/b2249_chart2.jpg

CWforFreedom on February 15, 2010 at 8:24 PM

Buh, Bayh…

If this keeps up the only ones remaining on the left side of the aisle will be the petulant socialist children…

Gohawgs on February 15, 2010 at 8:39 PM

Somethin’s up.

missl on February 15, 2010 at 9:34 PM

oh duh. double post–sowwy

ted c on February 15, 2010 at 10:49 PM

Maybe Rambo Dead Fish and Obambi threatened this guy Bayh.

And he didn’t like it. He is leaving town to run against them in 2012.

Weird things happening in DC. Everything from Air Force One over NYC to firing of IGs to You Lie!

father on February 15, 2010 at 11:56 PM

I wish Sen Lautenberg a comfortable, lengthy, and IMMEDIATE retirement.

JEM on February 16, 2010 at 1:46 AM

This is from Tamyra’s web page:

We are calling all people to file signatures tomorrow Republicans, Democrats, Independents, Tea Baggers, everyone with a pulse go to your county clerks office tomorrow before noon in your district.

She was begging for an election law lawyer to call her last night.

darwin-t on February 16, 2010 at 6:24 AM

Obowma:

Although the country is in terrible shape because of me and my policies. I’ve socialized the auto industry, banks, AIG and soon to be the healthcare industry. I’ve destroyed consumer confidence, unemployment at high levels, record debt and record printing of money which will result in hyper-inflation very soon.
The problem is I haven’t been in the public enough.

Obowma’s “Hope and Change” is the same as Carter’s malaise.

dthorny on February 16, 2010 at 7:13 AM

Wow, Bayh must think we’re all breath-takingly stupid to try to sell us the “Congress is no fun anymore” spin. He was gonna lose. Indiana voters were going to punish him for his ObamaCare vote. I believe he was so resentful about walking the plank to invoke cloture, he took the position with democrat leaders, “Since you cost me my seat (with perilous votes), I’ll cost you my seat (by announcing retirement so dang late).”

Hell hath no wrath like a woman scorned.

olesparkie on February 16, 2010 at 7:45 AM

Late to the party but still celebrating Evan’s decision. Agree that he saw the writing on the wall. Hoosiers are yelling “Buh-Bayh.” He was going down anyway. Equally interesting are the Republican posturings taking place. Richard Behney, as founder of the IN TEA Party, got 10,000 folks to Indy for the Tax Day TEA Party in April. He’s a strong, Conservative candidate. But GOP is still pushing political retreads, not bona-fide Conservatives. Two thoughts for the GOP: Massachusetts and DeDe.

indypat on February 16, 2010 at 8:15 AM

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