I heard on the radio that he'll say the reason is a "progressive brain disease."
Somehow, "progressive brain disease" and Republicans fit so nicely together in the same sentence.
From msnbc.msn.com: "WASHINGTON - Republican Sen. Pete Domenici of New Mexico intends to retire at the end of his term next year, closing out a 36-year career in Congress, Republican officials said Wednesday.
The officials said the 75-year-old Domenici intends to make a formal announcement on Thursday in his home state. They spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid pre-empting the six-term lawmaker.
Domenici would be the fifth Republican senator to decline to seek a new term, giving Democrats an opportunity to expand their majority in the 2008 elections....[..]
Let's revisit recent history and make sure we view the Domenici retirement through the appropriate lens, shall we?
Domenici is leaving under a cloud of scandal and possible future criminal indictment, stemming from the Department of Justice US Attorneys firings. He's accused of trying to pressure a US Attorney into using his office to influence the outcome of an election.
Fired US Attorney David Iglesias testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that he felt "leaned on" and "sickened" when Domenici called him at home wanting information about an investigation of a local Democrat. Domenici asked Iglesias if charges would be filed before the election, and when Iglesias told him they would not, Domenici said "That’s too bad" .. and hung up.
Doesn't sound like a hanging offence, but it is a BIG NO NO for a Senator to call a US Atty at home about a case the US Atty is working on.
Anyway, he can now say his sick brain made him do it .. that his illness affected his behavior while in Congress and made him do and say stupid things.
The investigations into whether Domenici violated Senate ethics rules, and/or engaged in criminal conduct, are still ongoing.
Later this month, when Bush’s pick for Attorney General comes up for confirmation, I'll bet certain revelations will be brought to light about certain Senators who were involved in the US Attorney scandal.
BTW -- since when is having a progressive brain disease an impediment for being in Congress? Sometimes you'd think it's a requirement.