Former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) announced Friday he won't run for the Senate or governor in 2012, clearing the way for other Democrats to enter those races.
Feingold told supporters of his Progressives United PAC that he wouldn't look to reclaim one of the state's Senate seats following his 2010 defeat. He also declined getting involved with a potential recall of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R).
"After twenty-eight continuous years as an elected official … I have found the past eight months to be an opportunity to look at things from a different perspective," Feingold wrote.
His decision not to run eases the path for Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) to enter the Senate race in 2012; Baldwin has said she's considering the race and has sought to build support for a possible announcement sometime soon.
Feingold said he'll stay focused on his work for Progressives United, and on teaching law school and working on a book.
Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) is not seeking reelection.