Despite wanting "badly" to run against Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.), his family's concerns prompted former Gov. Tommy Thompson (R-Wis.) to reject a return to electoral politics.

"My family didn't want me to run," Thompson told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Thursday shortly before he gave a speech to a tea party gathering on the steps of the State Capitol in Madison, Wis.

Thompson's daughter, Kelli, said after the speech that her father wanted to run badly. 

"He'd do this more than anything else," she said. "The family can't do it anymore. It's too vicious. It's too hard."

She said the family was unanimous in asking Thompson, who made a shortlived White House bid in 2007, not to run for Senate.