Top Democratic Senate Prospect Won't Run #WVSEN

Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado is the chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which must now look for a new Senate prospect in West Virginia. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Attorney Nick Preservati will not run for Senate in West Virginia, forcing Democrats to continue their search for a strong recruit in the 2014 battleground state.

Democrats have been hunting for a candidate in the Mountain State since Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., announced his retirement earlier this year. Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call rate this race Lean Republican.

Last year, Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, a Republican, announced her campaign for Rockefeller's seat. She remains the top Republican in the race.

Hoppy Kercheval of WV MetroNews broke the news on Preservati declining to run:

Sources tell MetroNews the Democrat came within days of announcing he was getting in the race for the seat being vacated by the retiring Sen. Jay Rockefeller, but decided against it for family reasons.

The sources say Preservati and his wife are adopting a child. The adoption has been fast tracked and for family reasons it was not the right time for a political campaign.

Preservati, 40, had met with pollsters, lined up a campaign staff and was within three days of announcing his entry into the race when family issues arose.  Preservati was personally recruited by U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.