Heitkamp won't run for Senate

Former North Dakota Attorney General Heidi Heitkamp has announced that she will not run against Sen. John Hoeven (R) for her state's open Senate seat.

Heitkamp emerged as a top potential Democratic recruit after Rep. Earl Pomeroy (D-N.D.) opted not to run for the seat, and DSCC Chairman Robert Menendez (N.J.) last week talked her up as a candidate.

"This has been an enormously personal decision," she said on her brother Joel's radio show. "It’s not one I ever thought I would be confronted with.

"My first impulse was that this is a job I’ve never really sought out, but I owe it to my party to at least consider it."

Heitkamp, who lost to Hoeven in a 2000 matchup for governor, said it was not the right move for her personally.

She said she met with Menendez but was not encouraged to run by President Obama.

State Sen. Tracy Potter is so far the only Democrat running for the seat, and Heitkamp's exit means Dorgan will be a heavy, heavy favorite in November.

Another name that will likely surface after Heitkamp's announcement is that of author Clay Straus Jenkinson.

This post was updated at 11:45 a.m.


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