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The Hamlet Effect (Cont.)

The names of politicians hampered with the "Hamlet effect" kept pouring in to my e-mail this afternoon.

A few examples that were sent my way:

* Rep. Jerry Moran (R-Kansas): Moran was a favorite among e-mailers who noted his on again, off again interest in the governor's mansion. In April Moran ruled out a race against Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D) only to reconsider within a month. In August Moran arrived at a final decision: No, again. Following that second "no," The Wichita Eagle editorial board opined: "It's nice to finally know for sure, as of Tuesday, that Moran won't challenge Gov. Kathleen Sebelius next year. But Moran hasn't done his Hamlet-like image any favors this summer with either his decision or indecision."

* Former Mississippi Attorney General Mike Moore (D): Moore is seen as the Democrats' best chance of winning in the Magnolia State -- if he would ever run. Moore was in the governor's race for roughly two months in 1999 before dropping out, leaving the field to Lt. Gov. Ronnie Musgrove (D), who went on to win in a close race that had to be decided in the end by the state Legislature. The next year Moore's name came up as a challenger to Sen. Trent Lott (R) but he demurred.  Moore may well get a chance to erase his Hamlet image next year when (and if) Lott retires.  Moore has said the Senate is the only other political office he would be interested in holding; Democrats will try to keep him to that pledge.

* Rep. Mark Foley (R-Fla.): In three of the last four election cycles, Foley has considered running for the Senate in Florida. In 2000, he dropped out of the open seat race to replace retiring Sen. Connie Mack (R) -- citing a "gut feeling."  In 2004, Foley was the Republican frontrunner before dropping out, citing his father's ill health.  He's back at it in 2006 as he has not ruled out a race against Sen. Bill Nelson (D). One problem: Rep. Katherine Harris (R), a favorite of conservatives, is already running.

Are there others I'm missing?  Shoot me an e-mail or post it to the comments section.

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 11, 2005; 5:59 PM ET
Categories:  Governors  
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