Democrat Jim Webb of Virginia won't run for a second term in 2012, a decision that gives Republicans a better chance of regaining their swing-state Senate seat. Webb, a Vietnam vet and former Navy secretary, said he's heading back to the private sector, reports the Times-Dispatch. Friends tell Politico he never quite adjusted to the Senate spotlight, despite a strong start that coincided with debate over the Iraq war and his foreign policy strong suit.
Already, speculation has turned to fellow Democrat Tim Kaine, the current chair of the Democratic National Party and a former Virginia governor, as a possible replacement. Kaine has sounded less than enthusiastic, however, notes the T-D. The GOP frontrunner is George Allen, the incumbent Webb beat in 2006, thanks in part to his "macaca" gaffe.