Sam Brownback is only 52 and has a job he loves.
But on Thursday, the Kansas Republican began the process of walking away from his seat in the U.S. Senate, announcing that he would not seek re-election in 2010.
The reason? A term limits pledge he signed in 1996.
Within minutes of his announcement, six-term Republican congressman Jerry Moran of Hays declared that he was entering the Senate race to replace Brownback. One other potential contender: seven-term GOP congressman Todd Tiahrt of Wichita.
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On the Democratic side, one question looms: Will Gov. Kathleen Sebelius seek to extend her political career by attempting to move to the Senate?
"I know she hasn’t ruled it out," Kansas Democratic Party chairman Larry Gates said.
The governor's race that year might also draw a crowded field, setting up the wildest political scramble in Kansas since at least 1996. That year, both the state’s U.S. Senate seats opened with the retirements of Bob Dole and Nancy Kassebaum.
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