GOP Stalwart Bond Will Leave Senate After 2010

Open Missouri seat sure to invite a contest
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Jan 8, 2009 10:44 AM CST

(Newser) – The GOP just can’t catch a break. Kit Bond, another senior Republican senator from a swing state, announced his retirement today, Politico reports. Bond joins Florida’s Mel Martinez, Kansas’ Sam Brownback, and, likely, Texas’ Kay Bailey Hutchison in a clutch of GOP Senate retirements. His decision not to run for reelection in 2010 is certain to prompt a tough race: Missouri went Republican by just 5,000 votes in November.

The often-abrasive Bond seemed wistful, saying, “In 1972, I became Missouri’s youngest governor. Good friends: I have no aspiration of becoming Missouri’s oldest senator.” He added best wishes for the incoming president and gratitude to other actors on the political stage: “I thank my political adversaries for keeping me nimble, and the media for keeping me humble.”