Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh will not seek re-election this November, an unexpected decision that hands Republicans an opportunity for a pick-up in a year when Democrats are already defending several open Senate seats.
The two-term senator is known as a moderate Democrat. Former GOP Sen. Dan Coats had been planning to challenge Bayh in November -- but a senior Democratic source told Fox News that recent polling showed Bayh way ahead of Coats, and that the retirement must have been a personal decision.
Bayh's staff said the latest polling showed Bayh ahead of Coats by 20 points.
In prepared remarks published by The Indianapolis Star, Bayh said he was "confident" about his prospects for re-election, but discouraged in his work on Capitol Hill by excessive partisanship.
"After all these years, my passion for service to my fellow citizens is undiminished, but my desire to do so in Congress has waned," he said, according to The Star.