Adding to the list of Democratic retirements, the scandal-plagued Sen. Chris Dodd has also decided not to seek reelection. While yesterday's retirement announcement by red state Democrat Sen. Byron Dorgan is likely to mean a Republican pick up, Dodd's decision to step aside will improve Democrats chances of maintaining his Connecticut seat. Given that Connecticut is deeply Democratic, the only realistic chance Republicans had of winning was to go up against Dodd, where the non-ideological factor of corruption could sway voters who would not normally vote for a Republican. Now, the popular state Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is expected to get the Democratic nomination, which will make the race a much bigger stretch for Republicans in a state that Obama carried by 23 points.
Meanwhile, Dow Jones reports that the announcement by Dodd, who serves as chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, could set back the financial regulatory overhaul in the Senate this year.
UPDATE: Blumenthal leads all Republican challengers by over 30 points, according to a PPP poll.
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