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Pomeroy Will Not Run For Senate

North Dakota Rep. Earl Pomeroy will not run for Senate, a Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee source tells RealClearPolitics.

Pomeroy, the state's lone congressman, had been considered Democrats' strongest candidate to replace Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), who announced his retirement yesterday. The long-held Democratic Senate seat now appears likely to flip parties, should Gov. John Hoeven (R) jump in the race as expected.

"I think Hoeven is the prohibitive favorite against anyone but Pomeroy," said Mark Jendrysik, a political scientist at the University of North Dakota. "Since I don't think Earl will run for Senate, it looks like the seat is John's for the taking."

Hoeven, governor since 2000, is extremely popular in the state. A recent poll found him with an 87 percent job approval rating. Pomeroy was first elected to Congress in 1992 and was won re-election with more than 60 percent of the vote in the last three elections.

MSNBC host Ed Schultz said this morning that the state Democratic Party chair contacted him about running, though he remains undecided.

Multiple messages left with Pomeroy's spokesperson were not returned.