Twin Democratic Senate retirements Tuesday shook up two of the top 2010 races. Chris Dodd? Sadly, a good thing; I offer my thoughts at the Register. Marc Ambinder thinks Dodd gets a consolation prize administration job.
Byron Dorgan? A very, very bad thing. Nate Silver instantly bumped North Dakota up to Number One most likely seat to switch parties. And Kos diarist Wilbur has an excellent analysis and believes it's about the removal of drug reimportation from health care:
This was so important to him. It was his legacy. He had been such a good soldier, such a stand up guy on everything else. He was not a drama queen, he did not try and undermine Obama, he did not try and make himself the center of attention like so many other senators. You could go weeks without hearing Dorgan’s name. But this was his idea, what he had promised his constituents, something everybody knew was the right thing to do. And then Obama comes in and like Terry’s brother in "On the Waterfront" tells Dorgan that it’s "not his night." Rahm and Jim had made a backroom deal with the drug companies and they were going to keep that deal.
So Dorgan said he’s going home. He didn’t say it was because of the drug re-importation bill. That’s because he is a good guy, a stand up guy, one that doesn’t stab you in the back even when you have taken everything from him. He is the type of guy who will stand with you when the world turns against you. He is the type of guy that you really miss.
Byron Dorgan: He could been a contenda. We've been really, really lucky to have an all-Democratic delegation out of North freakin' Dakota since 1986. Worst case scenario: Dems get their only viable candidate, Rep. Earl Pomeroy, in, but Pomeroy loses to Gov. John Hoeven (Update: Hoeven's running), and we lose both the House AND Senate seat.
Jeez, now I gotta say SOMEthing to cheer you up. Ok. I still say Vander Plaats over Branstad and Culver over Vander Plaats.