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Chris Dodd to step aside

Embattled Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd (D) has scheduled a press conference at his home in Connecticut Wednesday at which he is expected to announce he will not seek re-election, according to sources familiar with his plans.

Dodd's retirement comes after months of speculation about his political future, and amid faltering polling numbers and a growing sense among the Democratic establishment that he could not win a sixth term. It also comes less than 24 hours after Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) announced he would not seek re-election.

State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is widely expected to step into the void filled by Dodd and, at least at first blush, should drastically increase Democrats' chances of holding the seat.

Blumenthal, who has served as state Attorney General since 1990, is the most popular politician in the state and has long coveted a Senate seat; he had already signaled that he would run for the Democratic nomination against Sen. Joe Lieberman (I) in 2012. (A sidenote: Assuming Blumenthal gets in to the race, Rep. Chris Murphy could be the long-term beneficiary as he is widely regarded as a rising star and would be at the top of the list of Democratic hopefuls to challenge Lieberman in 2012.)

Without Dodd as a foil, Republicans chances of taking over a seat in this solidly blue state are considerably diminished. Former Rep. Rob Simmons and wealthy businesswoman Linda McMahon are battling it out for the Republican nod but either would start as an underdog in a general election matchup with Blumenthal.

Dodd joins North Dakota Sen. Byron Dorgan on the sidelines for Democrats. Six Republicans Senators are not seeking re-election in November.

Dodd's retirement comes roughly two years after his presidential ambitions came to an end in the Iowa caucuses. Dodd, always a longshot in a field filled with better known and better financed candidates, had moved his family to the Hawkeye State in the fall of 2007 in hopes of generating some excitement for his bid. The move backfired on the Democratic incumbent as many Connecticut voters bristled.

Dodd's political problems were further compounded later in 2008 when it was reported that he had been included in a special VIP mortgage loan program by Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo. Dodd insisted he was unaware of his inclusion and he was cleared of any wrongdoing by the Senate Ethics Committee but the political damage was done.

Once among the safest of incumbents, Dodd's numbers plummeted in the spring of 2009 before rebounding somewhat over the summer. But, a Quinnipiac University poll conducted late last year showed significant slippage for Dodd and led to widespread speculation that he had to vacate the seat for his party to have a chance at retaining it in the upcoming midterm elections.

Dodd's troubles were politically ironic, coming at a time when his power on Capitol Hill had reached a breath-taking level that most legislators dream of but never come close to achieving. In the last 18 months Dodd has been the primary author or co-author of legislation re-writing housing mortgage rules; the $700 billion bailout of Wall Street; key portions of the $787 billion stimulus package; a consumer protection bill overseeing the credit card industry; and the nearly $900 billion health-care legislation that has passed the Senate is in final negotiations with the House now.

Much of this work was done through his chairmanship of the Senate banking committee, but he also held powerful posts on the health and foreign relations committees. With each major piece of legislation Dodd ushered into law in recent years, came criticism that he did not anticipate. The mortgage bill came in mid-2008, which some said was delayed because of Dodd's presidential aspirations, and the financial bailout became one of the most unpopular pieces of legislation passed in recent memory. His work on the stimulus bill, approved last February, was an attempt to rein in executive compensation at firms that had been bailed out, but instead led to sharp criticism when executives at AIG, the largest recipient of taxpayer dollars, still received seven-figure bonuses shortly thereafter.

Paul Kane and Dan Balz contributed to this report.

By Chris Cillizza  |  January 5, 2010; 11:41 PM ET
Categories:  Senate  
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Comments

That's it?! We just let Dodd fade away and enjoy his ill gotten gains? How many health and banking corporations did his wife receive compensation from while hubby was writing regulations for the same? Was it 15? The two of them should spend the rest of their lives in jail for bribery!

Posted by: deardoff1 | January 10, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Yeah another anti-American scumbag pig Communist down! It's a good day indeed.

Posted by: DanX | January 6, 2010 9:35 PM | Report abuse

Yeah another anti-American scumbag pig Communist down! It's a good day indeed.

Posted by: DanX | January 6, 2010 9:35 PM | Report abuse

These "gentlemen" are doing for themselves what the voters will do for anyone who votes for this unconstitutional sell-out to the corporations.

Posted by: miriamac2001 | January 6, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Well, I guess it wasn't a "feint."

But I did notice that WaPo and Chris altered the headline and lede to say he was "expected" to resign.

Still think he could have won. Maybe it's his health after all...

Still, Senator Dodd, we need your immediate help to stop DOMESTIC terrorism. Do it in your father's memory. We need some American Nuremberg Trials. Read this and see if you agree:

TEAM OBAMA: When Will You Stop DOMESTIC TERRORISM -- like this:

U.S. SILENTLY TORTURES, IMPAIRS AMERICANS WITH CELL TOWER MICROWAVES, SATELLITES, SAYS VETERAN MAINSTREAM MEDIA JOURNALIST

Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan: What Do You Know About THIS?

• Secret Bush legacy multi-agency federal program uses cell tower/GPS satellite microwave/laser electromagnetic radiation attack system to torture, impair, subjugate "targeted" citizens -- and oversees local "community watch" vigilante terrorism and financial sabotage campaigns.

See story at: Poynter.org ("Reporting" section)
OR http://nowpublic.com/world/u-s-silently-tortures-americans-cell-tower-microwaves
http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america OR NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "U.S. SILENTLY..." / "GESTAPO USA"

Posted by: scrivener50 | January 6, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Cry no tears for "Countrywide" Chris.

Posted by: leapin | January 6, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Dodd did what he could. Luckily there are 6 Republican senators quitting to two Dems. Maybe more will quit to teabag their friends at home and quit slurping at the Federal teat. Maybe those Repubs will finally walk it like they have talked it for a hundred years of corrupt history, since the end of Reconstruction. Maybe we can get a new Gifford Pinchot out of it.

Posted by: sparkplug1 | January 6, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

The only GOP nominee that actually matters in the CT race is Peter Schiff. None of the other candidates understand economics, Peter Schiff does. We as a nation should want this person in the Senate.
A big government pro-war pro-debt democrat or a big government pro-more-war pro-debt republican is not what will get us out of this mess which we call our economy!

Youtube Peter Schiff Was Right.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdVP_sgCETo

Posted by: mrbr0lly | January 6, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

My guess? Future cabinet position.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | January 6, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I like Dodd - I think he would have been able to pull out the election.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | January 6, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

So does Dodd take this opportunity to leave a legacy of real reform on the financial system, or does he wimp out and look for a high-dollar lobbying/industry job?

Posted by: bsimon1 | January 6, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

test

Posted by: JakeD | January 6, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

If they throw this bum out NOW, he can't do much more damage. Of course, there are some legal issues. Did he take bribe money over Freddie/Fannnie? How many cronies were fed taxpayer money? If a good, honest prosecutor can take the case, Dodd could be prosecuted under RICO. There're more rats inside the beltway that need to be brought up on charges. The story leaves out a very important aspect of what's happening. There's a growing revolt against the old big government types, dem-repub. There's a new generation of leaner and meaner Constitutionalists that see government as a major problem. Rising stars like Peter Schiff can do far more good for CT than any of the dems or recycled repub hacks.

Posted by: mibu | January 6, 2010 4:50 AM | Report abuse

If they throw this bum out NOW, he can't do much more damage. Of course, there are some legal issues. Did he take bribe money over Freddie/Fannnie? How many cronies were fed taxpayer money? If a good, honest prosecutor can take the case, Dodd could be prosecuted under RICO. There're more rats inside the beltway that need to be brought up on charges. The story leaves out a very important aspect of what's happening. There's a growing revolt against the old big government types, dem-repub. There's a new generation of leaner and meaner Constitutionalists that see government as a major problem. Rising stars like Peter Schiff can do far more good for CT than any of the dems or recycled repub hacks.

Posted by: mibu | January 6, 2010 4:39 AM | Report abuse

Translation: Hooray for me and screw you!

didn't he just cop a state medical school for his healthcare vote?

wonder what is up his sneaky sleeve? won't find out on wednesday...bet he stays in d.c. as a lobbyist.

Let's hope this is the commencement of a beautiful chain reaction among his peers.


Posted by: furtiveadmirer | January 6, 2010 4:31 AM | Report abuse

You know, there is one guy who predicted (literally, the guy wrote an entire bestselling book on it in '06) the housing bubble and the recession who happens to be running for CT Senate in 2010. His name is Peter Schiff, and his limited government movement is rapidly gaining steam not only among CT voters but the entire nation as well. It's not just a 2 way race for the Republican nomination, you should edit your article as the guy has raised almost $1.4 million :)

www.schiffforsenate.com

Posted by: mgrill | January 6, 2010 4:25 AM | Report abuse

Another rat deserting a sinking ship?

Or, another thief grabbing his loot and getting out of town fast?

What is over the horizon that these people know about and aren't telling?

Posted by: lewwaters | January 6, 2010 4:22 AM | Report abuse

now we can pay him his fat cat pension for destroying the freaking economy. this no good sob needs to have his pension taken.

Posted by: 12thgenamerican | January 6, 2010 4:17 AM | Report abuse

Chris Dodd ended up with 5,000.000.00 in his bank account after an earmark he got passed that bridged two highways.
I cannot imagine what his retirement is costing us... bend over america, chris wants you to meet his li'l friend!

Posted by: popfan | January 6, 2010 3:57 AM | Report abuse


"Of course the article left out the one person who saw the sub-prime debacle coming a mile away and wants a smaller, limited government with less taxation, and more freedom. Return to the Constitution!"

and more TV and more candy and more staying up past your bedtime too!

Posted by: Noacoler | January 6, 2010 2:36 AM | Report abuse

Of course the article left out the one person who saw the sub-prime debacle coming a mile away and wants a smaller, limited government with less taxation, and more freedom. Return to the Constitution! Elect Peter Schiff!
Free Irwin Schiff!
End the FED!
Abolish slavery-Abolish the IRS!

Posted by: MyAmerica | January 6, 2010 2:27 AM | Report abuse

Holy crap, JakeD is still awake!

Posted by: scrivener50 | January 6, 2010 1:54 AM | Report abuse

I SAY THIS IS A FEINT, AND DODD'S GOING TO PULL A KENNEDY:
"KENNEDYS -- AND DODDS -- DON'T QUIT!"

Dodd got a bad rap on the VIP loan. Ted Kennedy would take him to the woodshed, if he were still with us, for even considering throwing in the towel.

Senator, you can beat this -- how about pulling a double-reverse and use the publicity Chris Cillizza has given you by "taking the bait," and announce that both "Kennedys and Dodds don't quit, and I'm in this race to WIN!" Try it. What have you got to lose? You can always change your mind later. But once you are out, you're out.

Or is this already your strategy, and you are playing Cillizza like a fiddle?

Senator, stick around. You'll win re-election -- and you can help cure THIS American shame:

U.S. SILENTLY TORTURES AMERICANS WITH CELL TOWER MICROWAVES, SATELLITES, SAYS VETERAN MAINSTREAM JOURNALIST

• Secret Bush legacy multi-agency federal program uses cell tower/GPS satellite microwave/laser electromagnetic radiation attack system to torture, impair, subjugate "targeted" citizens -- and oversees local "community watch" vigilante terrorism and financial sabotage campaigns.

See story at: Poynter.org ("Reporting" section)
OR http://www.nowpublic.com/world/u-s-silently-tortures-americans-cell-tower-microwaves
http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america OR NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "U.S. SILENTLY..." / "GESTAPO USA"

Posted by: scrivener50 | January 6, 2010 1:50 AM | Report abuse

To bad, I had hoped the GOP would pick up this seat. Oh well it all comes out in the wash. The GOP gains a far better seat to take and hold for the future in ND and at least we don't have to hear about Dodd and his corruption anymore. I expect to hear of more old Dem retirements over the next month.

Posted by: iacoboni04 | January 6, 2010 1:43 AM | Report abuse

To bad, I had hoped the GOP would pick up this seat. Oh well it all comes out in the wash. The GOP gains a far better seat to take and hold for the future in ND and at least we don't have to hear about Dodd and his corruption anymore. I expect to hear of more old Dem retirements over the next month.

Posted by: iacoboni04 | January 6, 2010 1:43 AM | Report abuse

Good ridden to bad rubbish!

Posted by: godess1 | January 6, 2010 1:05 AM | Report abuse

Now, if only pResident Obama would resign.

Posted by: JakeD | January 6, 2010 1:05 AM | Report abuse

Peter Schiff for Senate 2010 (CT) .... Google him

Posted by: robinsoncom | January 6, 2010 12:57 AM | Report abuse

Awww, poor Chris Dodd. Couldn't take the heat - eh boy? Unfortunately, the clueless CT voters will most likely replace him with an even bigger turd, Blumenthal.

Posted by: gouZgounis | January 6, 2010 12:52 AM | Report abuse

Peter Schiff for Senate 2010 (CT) .... Google him

Posted by: robinsoncom | January 6, 2010 12:52 AM | Report abuse

Peter Schiff for Senate 2010 (CT) .... Google him

Posted by: robinsoncom | January 6, 2010 12:50 AM | Report abuse

Good riddance. He will not be missed. He was a hypocrite who talked the talk of social consciousness but walked the walk of a slave owned by corporate America.

Posted by: BlanketyBlank | January 6, 2010 12:50 AM | Report abuse

Awww, poor Chris Dodd. Couldn't take the heat - eh boy? Unfortunately, the clueless CT voters will most likely replace him with an even bigger turd, Blumenthal.

Posted by: gouZgounis | January 6, 2010 12:50 AM | Report abuse

Schiff 2010!!!

Posted by: GnomeChompsky | January 6, 2010 12:49 AM | Report abuse

Awww, poor Chris Dodd. Couldn't take the heat - eh boy? Unfortunately, the clueless CT voters will most likely replace him with an even bigger turd, Blumenthal.

Posted by: gouZgounis | January 6, 2010 12:48 AM | Report abuse

Connecticut is ready to embrace someone at last that it really wants and Richard Blumenthal fills the bill nicely.

As for a Republican -- you've got to be kidding. Not after the wreckage dealt up and down Connecticut by Republican policies that fostered the Great Recession.

Turning the hen house over to the fox -- c'mon.

Posted by: ram9478 | January 6, 2010 12:47 AM | Report abuse

WOO HOO!!!!

Posted by: JakeD | January 6, 2010 12:46 AM | Report abuse

Per the article:

"Without Dodd as a foil, Republicans [sic] chances of taking over a seat in this solidly blue state are considerably diminished."

If Chris Cillizza thinks this kind of phraseology is "analysis," he is laboring under a heavy and severe misapprehension.

It is tone-deaf, synthetic drivel.

Republicans may or may not pick up this particular seat; but given the nation's mood subsequent to the disastrous Democrat-hack agenda, "solidly blue" Connecticut voters do not need a "Chris Dodd foil." There will be backlash due in part to Dodd as well as the other well-known wackos (we know their names); and Dodd stepping aside is not going to "magically neutralize" voter disillusionment.

You wonder if the media's pathological obtuseness is generally deliberate, or if the crooked circular logic they farcically call "analysis" stems from real deep-seated delusion in earnest.

Posted by: finsher771 | January 6, 2010 12:46 AM | Report abuse

The problem with this chunk of camel excriment stepping aside is they have clone incapable of an independent thought outside Weenie Reid's champagne liberal idealogy.

Maybe, when Dodd has more time to reflect on his lack of integrity and intellectual honesty, he'll choke on the memory of what he has done.

Posted by: SadrCityRocks | January 6, 2010 12:44 AM | Report abuse

According to the most recent Quinnipiac poll on November 10, 2009, Connecticut's Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has a 78% approval rating.

http://www.quinnipiac.edu/x1296.xml?ReleaseID=1393

Posted by: narz | January 6, 2010 12:44 AM | Report abuse

This is another stunning development. Dorgan and now Dodd. I wonder if Harry Reid is next on the chopping block. This is going to be a very good year for The GOP and conservatives in general, although Dodd's replacement may be harder to beat than him....Read: Obama at a cross roads...at...

http://cooperscopy.blogspot.com/

Posted by: ronsuev | January 6, 2010 12:44 AM | Report abuse

Just asking for a show of hands.

I have loved this country since my dad told me how to treat a flag with respect. I know I am not alone.

Anyone feel that the political class has become the profession the Federalists feared it would be in a time of Faction?

They are mortgaging and whoring our wealth as a country and as citezens....for themselves.

The Tree of Liberty must be watered....

Posted by: TreeOfLiberty2 | January 6, 2010 12:43 AM | Report abuse

According to the most recent Quinnipiac poll on November 10, 2009, Connecticut's Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has a 78% approval rating.

http://www.quinnipiac.edu/x1296.xml?ReleaseID=1393

Posted by: narz | January 6, 2010 12:42 AM | Report abuse

Great news!

What CT needs now is someone who actually PREDICTED the financial crisis before it happened. That man is the only one running who knows how to help our situation and he's the only candidate not mentioned in this article: Peter Schiff.

http://schiffforsenate.com

Posted by: andrewsharp | January 6, 2010 12:41 AM | Report abuse

The Rats are jumping ship! Now if we could get Queen Nancy, Harry Reid, Barney Frank and John Kerry to follow!

Posted by: TexRancher | January 6, 2010 12:40 AM | Report abuse

America sure hopes that this guy will still be investigated.
He's not leaving much since there was no way this liberal looney was going to be re-elected.

Posted by: BruceMcDougall | January 6, 2010 12:38 AM | Report abuse

Let me guess, he got a great job future in Healthcare????

GOOD RIDDANCE LOSER!!!

Posted by: Impeachbush99 | January 6, 2010 12:38 AM | Report abuse

These criminals have sold the US down the river and in doing so already knew they threw themselves under the bus just to pass the biggest boondoggle in history of modern man. I really hope against hope states and their attorney generals get together and prosecute these liars and cheats to the fullest extent and they spend the rest of their miserable lives in jail with Maddow.

Posted by: prgc33 | January 6, 2010 12:38 AM | Report abuse

The Rats are jumping ship! Now if we could get Queen Nancy, Harry Reid, Barney Frank and John Kerry to follow!

Posted by: TexRancher | January 6, 2010 12:37 AM | Report abuse

Feels a wind from '94...and smiles

Posted by: TreeOfLiberty2 | January 6, 2010 12:37 AM | Report abuse

If I lived in CT, my vote without a doubt would go to Peter. Schiff...but since I do not, I will make contributions instead.

Posted by: nate081 | January 6, 2010 12:36 AM | Report abuse

The Rats are jumping ship!Now if only we could get Queen Nancy, Harry Reid, Barney Frank and John Kerry to follow!

Posted by: TexRancher | January 6, 2010 12:35 AM | Report abuse

GO ON, Take the money and run...

Posted by: JimSETexas | January 6, 2010 12:34 AM | Report abuse

Unlike his dad, Chris Dodd will manage to leave the Senate without being censured. It's always nice when children can surpass their parents' accomplishments.

Posted by: Rob_ | January 6, 2010 12:32 AM | Report abuse

Chris Dodd should be in jail and thats where Ted Kennedy should have died. White trash at the highest form.

Posted by: BUDDYHOGAN | January 6, 2010 12:31 AM | Report abuse

Goodbye and good riddance. Now, if only the rest of the parasites who have served more than two terms in congress will follow suit, America might become a respectable country again.

Posted by: MET9 | January 6, 2010 12:31 AM | Report abuse

The Republican race in CT is not simply a 2-horse race between McMahon and Simmons! Peter Schiff is on the move with a message that resonates with many, many disaffected, disenchanted, and otherwise disgruntled voters that have seen their representatives (from both parties) misrepresent them once elected. Peter Schiff is a fresh voice of reason and sanity in an otherwise dull field. Check him out...

Posted by: diablocz | January 6, 2010 12:30 AM | Report abuse

I am elated to hear this news. I am equally disappointed in the failure to mention Peter Schiff as a Republican candidate.

Posted by: element41 | January 6, 2010 12:27 AM | Report abuse

I've a feeling that the DNC is saying "Thank Dodd".

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | January 6, 2010 12:27 AM | Report abuse

Next stop. Lobbyist for Fannie Mae or board of directors for Goldman Sachs?

A classic example of a hack who went from mediocrity to absolute failure.

Posted by: NAuchi | January 6, 2010 12:26 AM | Report abuse

Goodbye and good riddance.

Posted by: fenoy | January 6, 2010 12:26 AM | Report abuse

And the dominos begin to fall...

Don't let the door hit you in the A*s on the way out.

Nathan R. Jessup
www.the-raw-deal.com

Posted by: NathanRJessup | January 6, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

Finally - get rid of this drunk. In fact he's probably leaving because his drinking buddy Kennedy isn't around any more.

Posted by: Jaymand | January 6, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

Finally - get rid of this drunk. In fact he's probably leaving because his drinking buddy Kennedy isn't around any more.

Posted by: Jaymand | January 6, 2010 12:22 AM | Report abuse

One can only hope that Democratic Senators and Representatives are stepping aside so they can vote this abonable health care reform bill down, while resisting pressure from the leadership and DNC. I'm not optimistic but I think even the most jaded politician knows this is the wrong way to reform a quarter to a third of the economy. Idealists will shout their praises...but this country deserves a whole lot more than this bill gives.

Posted by: TreeOfLiberty2 | January 6, 2010 12:21 AM | Report abuse

It's good to see a crook fall.

Posted by: jfshiey | January 6, 2010 12:16 AM | Report abuse

Good move. I would advise the same for Barney Frank and numerous others on both sides of the isle. We have no intention of reelecting incumbents who failed the public miserably time and again.

Posted by: dogsbestfriend | January 6, 2010 12:12 AM | Report abuse

First Dorgan, then Vitter, now Dodd.
I guess it really IS true that "good things come in threes".

Posted by: OttoDog | January 6, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

Good news. Thanks, Dodd.

Posted by: nodebris | January 5, 2010 11:54 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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