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Posted at 11:48 AM ET, 02/ 9/2011

Webb won't run for reelection in 2012

By Ben Pershing

Sen. James Webb (D-Va.) has announced that he will not run for reelection in 2012.

Webb's decision, long anticipated by many in Virginia politics, will make his seat more difficult to hold for his party. Ex-Sen. George Allen (R), who lost the seat in 2006 to Webb, is running to win it back, and a handful of other GOP candidates are also running. Some Democrats hope ex-Gov. Tim Kaine will decide to run for the seat, but he has given no indication yet that he is interested.

Webb's office released the following statement:


Five years ago this week, on February 8, 2006, I announced my intention to run for the United States Senate. We had neither campaign funds nor a staff. We were challenged in a primary, and trailed the incumbent in the general election by more than 30 points in the polls.

Over the next nine months we focused relentlessly on the need to reorient our national security policy, to restore economic fairness and social justice, and to bring greater accountability in our government. I will always be grateful for the spirit and energy that was brought into this campaign by thousands of loyal and committed volunteers. Their enthusiasm and sheer numbers were truly the difference in that election.

It has been a great and continuing privilege to serve in the United States Senate. I am very proud of my talented and dedicated staff, which has worked tirelessly to resolve the issues on which I based my candidacy, and to protect the interests of all Virginians in this national forum. Among other contributions we have given our Post- 9/11 veterans the best GI Bill since World War Two; we have taken the lead in reforming our criminal justice system; we have led the way toward stronger relations in East and Southeast Asia; and we have been a strong voice in calling on China to act more responsibly in the world community. We will continue to work on these and other issues throughout the rest of my term.

However, after much thought and consideration I have decided to return to the private sector, where I have spent most of my professional life, and will not seek re-election in 2012.

Notwithstanding this decision, I have every intention of remaining involved in the issues that affect the well-being and the future of our country.


By Ben Pershing  | February 9, 2011; 11:48 AM ET
Categories:  Virginia  
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