Baucus decides against run at seventh Senate term

By Derrick Cain

© Copyright Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc.

WASHINGTON, April 23, 2013 - Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., said today that he has decided not to run for a seventh term next year.

Baucus, first elected in 1978, became the sixth Senate Democrat to announce they will not run for re-election in 2014. Baucus, sometimes a thorn in the Democrats' side, has been the top Democrat on the committee since 2001.

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“When I first asked my hero and mentor Mike Mansfield whether I should run for U.S. Senate nearly 40 years ago, he told me it would take a lot of hard work, a lot of shoe leather, and a bit of luck,” Baucus said. “In the next year and a half, I want to spend all my hard work, shoe leather and luck working for the people of Montana instead of campaigning.”

Baucus said he made the decision after “much consideration and many conversations” with his wife, Mel.

“But, I'm not turning out to pasture because there is important work left to do, and I intend to spend the year and a half getting it done,” he said. “Our country and our state face enormous challenges - rising debt, a dysfunctional tax code, threats to our outdoor heritage, and the need for more good-paying jobs.”

He said he intends to work on a farm bill as well as legislation dealing with highway program authorization and the North Fork watershed.

“At a national level, I will continue to work on simplifying and improving the tax code, tackling the nation's debt, pushing important job-creating trade agreements through the Senate, and implementing and expanding affordable health care for more Americans,” Baucus said.

Political pundits believe that the leading potential Democratic candidate to replace Baucus is former governor Brian Schweitzer.


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