Rep. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), fresh from a farm bill victory, told reporters Wednesday that he would decide on his political future next month. 

“I haven’t decided. I am going to take some time,” Peterson said. “I have been in limbo here, in farm bill hell for three years and it affects you.”

{mosads}If he doesn’t run, Peterson’s departure would hand Republicans another top pickup opportunity in his Republican-leaning northwestern Minnesota that’s been heavily targeted by the GOP. 

Peterson said he will take about three weeks to “get back to normal” before he makes a decision on whether to seek a 13th term. 

“Then I have to do my regular process: get the campaign together, figure out what I am going to run on, all the different things that need to be done,” he said. “Probably by the first of March I’ll know. At this point I am raising money. I’m doing all that but I’m going to do a gut check.”

Peterson is one of the vanishing breed of moderate Blue Dog Democrats in Congress who are generally in favor of cutting the deficit while being pro-gun. As the ranking member on the Agriculture Committee, Peterson played an important role in forging the dairy compromise that led to the giant farm bill passing the House on Wednesday by a 251 to 166 vote margin. It would not have passed without his contingent of rural Democrats.

On the policy side, Peterson said he plans to focus on Commodity Futures Trading Commission reauthorization and Dodd-Frank financial reform rulemaking in the months to come. 


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