KCK Mayor Reardon Won't Run For Senate

February 5, 2010

Kansas City, Kansas Mayor Joe Reardon said he will not run for the Democratic nomination for Congress from Kansas’ 3rd district.
He said the demands of his job as mayor of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County, the recession and concerns for his family have led him to pass up the race.

The decision is a blow to the Democratic Party’s chances of finding a big name candidate for the race.
The seat is currently held by Rep. Dennis Moore, who is retiring at the end of the year.

Even before Reardon made his decison, the once-safe Democratic seat had been recategorized by some Washington analysts as one that Republicans may win.
“After careful consideration with my family, and in light of the national recession and its impact on our community, I must remain focused on finishing the work we’ve started to help Wyandotte County and our region overcome the challenges the ongoing economic crisis has created. Therefore, I will not be a candidate for the 3rd District at this time,” Reardon said in a written statement.

The National Republican Congressional Committee reacted with happiness. Spokesman Tom Erickson said Reardon refused to be “a sacrificial lamb.”
“With Joe Reardon out of the race, the Democrats have no candidate and no hope of defending this seat in November,”said Erickson.

A spokesman for the Kansas Democratic Party challenged that statement. Tyler Longpine responded, “I wouldn’t characterize it that we lost our last shot.”
Longpine added, “There will be some intense conversations with other potential candidates.” He said there are people still considering entering the race.

Longpine said those other potential candidates had been giving Reardon time to make a decision. “Joe signaled some interest in the race,” Longpine said. “Out of respect for his work, they were giving him space” to make his decision.
Larry Gates, Chairman of the Kansas Democratic Party, said he was glad Reardon considered the race, but did not expect him to run.

“I have been talking to other people,” Gates said.
Gates said some officer holders or other prominent Democrats may now start making decisions.

He said it may even include people have worked with Moore in his Congressional office.

“There’s more than a couple looking,” Gates said.

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