Douglas not running in 2010
MONTPELIER — Gov. Jim Douglas announced today he will not run for re-election in 2010.
At a morning news conference at the Statehouse, Douglas said that after 36 years in the spotlight, it was time to start a new chapter in his life.
The 58-year-old Republican said he wouldn’t run for a fifth two-year term next year and had no plans to seek other elected office.
“...As any farmer knows after many years working sunup to sundown, seven days a week, there comes a time to turn over the reins to fresh arms. For me, that time is approaching. After 36 years as a public servant, 28 of those years in statewide office, with what will be eight years as governor, and through 15 statewide elections, I will have held center stage long enough for anybody."
Gallery; Douglas announces he won’t run in 2010
Douglas, who’d said in recent months that he planned to run again, made the annoucnement midway through his fourth term in a room packed with longtime aides, supporters and some political opponents. He wasn’t specific in saying why he didn’t want to continue in the job, saying only he’d been in public service long enough.
“I know there will be some speculation as to what is next, so I want to lay a few questions to rest immediately: I am not running for president. (Wife) Dorothy has a divorce lawyer on speed dial if I ever utter that crazy idea,” he said.
The career public servant won re-election handily in a three-way race in 2008, gaining a majority of the vote in a testy campaign against Democrat Gaye Symington and independent Anthony Pollina.
But Douglas twice had vetoes overridden in the recently completed legislative session in a Legislature controlled by Democrats, losing fights over a same-sex marriage bill and a budget bill.
His 10-minute statement this morning included the dry humor he has become known for. "I'm not running for president," he said. "Dorothy has a divorce lawyer on speed dial," should he even consider the idea, he joked. Douglas also pledged not to be a lame duck governor for the rest of his term. "I am running state government," he vowed.
And the LPD's say:
The comment are always more telling than the posting.
At any rate, these guys come up with 2 interesting scenarios. One is the possibility of Randy Brock for governor. I like him. Don't know him well, but he gets high marks from most other liberty-oriented people in the state as one to watch. This is pretty exciting stuff.
The other is a whole lot more interesting and fun to consider. Someone hypothesized that Douglas might challenge Welch in 2010. But then, the LPD's mentioned a possible Senate run against Leahy and my ears (or eyelashes?) perked up. We haven't been able to find anyone who could give Leahy a run for his money. Now with Douglas-- a Republican governor in VERMONT-- and his position as head of the National Governor's Association, we may have a contender. I'm not Douglas' biggest fan but one has to admit he's miles above Leahy and is electable.
Wow. Just wow.