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Bayh to decide about political future this fall


INDIANAPOLIS – Former U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh said Monday he and his wife will make a decision about his future – including a possible run for governor - later this fall.

He spoke to reporters about departing U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett, whom he nominated four years ago. But the question of whether Bayh, a Democrat, might run against Republican Gov. Mike Pence in 2016 also came up.

“My boys are going to be going to college on Aug. 24, and Susan and I are going to get together after that and talk about the next chapter of our lives,” Bayh said. “That’s an election that’s two and a half years from now. We’ve got important races this fall, mayor’s races next year, so first things first.”

He served as Indiana governor from 1989 to 1997, and as U.S. Senator from 1999 to 2011.

Bayh has never lost an election. But he was facing a possible nail-biter in 2010 when he stunned Indiana Democrats by deciding not to seek re-election to the U.S. Senate.

At the time he blamed excessive partisanship and dysfunction in Congress for his retirement, at age 54, from a career that included a brief run for the Democratic presidential nomination and consideration by two presidential candidates to be their running mate.

Just last week, Bayh told a reporter for Community Newspaper Holdings Inc. that running for governor was “less likely than more likely. I haven’t ruled it out.”

He also has $10 million in campaign cash he could use for a gubernatorial race.

Democrat John Gregg ran against Pence in 2012, and seems to be gearing up for another run. But a Bayh candidacy likely would shift the landscape.