Senator Snowe Won’t Seek a Fourth Term

Olympia Snowe, the 65 year old moderate Republican announced that she will not seek a fourth term. She will retire at the end of her third term that ends on January 3, 2013.

Her announcement has caused quite a shock among voters and politicians. The National Republican leadership was counting on her to gain majority and take control over the Senate. This would prove to be an added advantage to the Democrats who already posses a slim majority with 53-47 seats.

Explaining her announcement, Senator Snowe said “The two-party system is what’s been fundamental. And I think they have the responsibility ultimately because they control the governing institutions. That means they have to come to grips with their obligation to make the system work and what we’ve been witnessing is dysfunction and political paralysis in Washington”

Reports say that Snowe’s decision has brought chaos to the politics of Maine. It is widely known that she is the popular choice. This is her 18th year in the Senate after 16 years in the house. She isn’t the first to announce that she won’t be seeking another term. Jim Webb of Virginia and Ben Nelson of Nebraska and an Independent, Joe Lieberman have also announced that they would not seek another term. But, Snowe was the most likely to have won. Moderates are setting quite a pattern this year.

Senator Snowe is known for the influence she usually has over close votes. She recently helped block a health care law by President Obama. The law was about letting employees opt out of covering the cost of birth control pills if they have moral objections with it. Though Senator Snowe’s announcement carries a clear message asking the two major political parties of the United States to sort things out, there is word out there that this could go another way.

A political science professor said this could either end up pushing people to fix the broken things or simply mean that we are turning the asylum in to the lunatics. The Republicans have less than two weeks to find candidates to succeed her. The candidates need 2000 signatures to put their names on the ballot for the November 6th election.

This doesn’t mean Snowe has completely given up. She would continue to work on reforming the Senate from the outside.

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