Rep. Donnelly says redistricting has him thinking about 2012 plans

Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), one of the few centrist Democrats who survived last November's midterm elections, said Thursday that redistricting might very well change his 2012 plans.

Donnelly suggested a run for governor in 2012 might be a more attractive option should his congressional district be redrawn to include more Republican territory, according to the AP.  

Republicans control the Indiana state legislature and will largely control this year's redraw. Even though the size of the state's congressional delegation will remain unchanged, Republicans will likely look to make marginally Republican districts safer bets for the party.

That, along with the likelihood that Donnelly would once again be a top GOP target in 2012, could have him leaning toward a statewide run. 

Donnelly held off Republican Jackie Walorski to keep his seat in 2010 and was likely aided by the presence of a Libertarian candidate on the ballot who garnered about 5 percent of the vote.  

Democrats in the state have been looking for a top-tier candidate to run for governor in 2012 after former Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) passed on the race. Former Rep. Baron Hill (D-Ind.) also said he wouldn't get in the race to succeed Gov. Mitch Daniels (R). 

Among Republicans, many observers think Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) is more likely than not to jump in the race for governor now that Bayh is out. Pence is also a rumored Republican presidential hopeful in 2012 and is expected to make a final decision on his plans as early as the end of the month.