Saying that the “office doesn't belong to me. It belongs to the people of Wisconsin and there is something to be said for not staying in office too long," Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.), announced Friday that he won’t seek a fifth term next year.
He is the eighth senator, and sixth Democrat, to decline to seek reelection next year.
The political action committees of CUNA and NAFCU never gave him money because in all of his campaigns he declined to take PAC money. He mostly self financed his campaigns and in 2006 spent more than $6 million of his own money to win reelection with 67% of the vote.
Kohl is the fourth-ranking Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee but hasn’t been especially active on that panel. Before entering the Senate he worked with his brothers to develop the family’s retail business into the national Kohl’s department store chain. He also bought the Milwaukee Bucks basketball team.
Wisconsin will probably have a competitive Senate race next year. Both Democrats and Republicans have a strong presence in the Badger State and in 2010, Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) was defeated by Republican businessman Ron Johnson.
Currently, the Senate has 51 Democrats, 47 Republicans and two independents who caucus with the Democrats.