Nation: No More Senate Retirements, Menendez Says

Posted February 24, 2010 at 6:42pm

Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (N.J.) says he doesn’t expect any more Democratic retirements this cycle.

“I have every confidence at this point in time that there are no other Senate retirements,” Menendez assured reporters Wednesday at the Christian Science Monitor breakfast. “We clearly understand in the case of Byron Dorgan and Evan Bayh, these are very personal decisions that they came to the conclusion that they wanted to do something else with their lives.”

Menendez said it’s the Republican Party that’s in a tough circumstance this cycle, with contested primaries that he said will hamper their chances of winning seats in Nevada, California, Colorado, Arkansas, Kentucky, New Hampshire and Florida.

“Republicans face competitive primaries in nearly every Senate race,” Menendez said. “We also see a drain on resources. Nearly everywhere the Republicans have a primary, the Democrat has a cash-on-hand advantage over everyone in their field.”

“Look at what they’ve done in their primaries,” he said. “You’ve got people moving further and further to the right, like [former state Attorney General Kelly] Ayotte in New Hampshire and [former Lt. Gov. Jane] Norton in Colorado. … You have Ayotte trying to get the endorsement of [Sen.] Jim DeMint [R-S.C.] and you have Norton as saying that President Obama cares more about terrorists than he does about Americans.”

National Republican Senatorial Committee spokesman Brian Walsh responded that polls in many of those races show his party has the upper hand.