Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Chris Dodd Retires

Image credit:, reduced by Cujo359

I received this e-mail about an hour ago from Senator Dodd's campaign:

Today I announced that after 35 years of representing the people of Connecticut in the United States Congress, I will not be a candidate for re-election this November.

I want to express my deepest gratitude to the people of Connecticut for the remarkable privilege of being elected eight times over the past four decades to our national assembly.

You have honored me beyond words with your confidence.

Let me quickly add that there have been times when my positions and actions have caused some of you to question that confidence. I regret that, but it is equally important that you know I never wavered in my determination to do the best job for our state and nation. I love my job as your Senator, I always have, and still do. However, this past year has raised some challenges that insisted I take stock of my life.

He goes on to write that he is resigning so that he can see more of his children. I kid you not.

I'm going to refrain from commenting for now. Recent events have left a stain on what is, on balance, a worthy career as a public servant. As I wrote, I'm beyond second chances right now, but there's something to be said for perspective and forgiveness. I just don't have much of the former in me at the moment.


Mauimom said...

I wrote back to Dodd [although who knows if it will get through the filters] that if he REALLY wanted to honor Ted Kennedy, he would vote AGAINST this travesty of a "health care bill."

Shit, Dodd's retiring, so he doesn't have to carry water for his home state insurance companies any more.

Just "do the right thing" and go out on a note of refusing to support this rape of the American public.

Cujo359 said...

Hi, Mauimom

Yes, he could do that, but folks who do that tend to lower their "value" as lobbyists and consultants afterward. I don't know if that's Dodd's intention, or if he's just truly deluded into believing he did the right thing by compromising, but one has to consider the possibility.

That's one reason I don't want to comment too much. The next few months, and the months following the 2010 election, should show what's really up.

Either way, this has been a sad end to a good career.

Mauimom said...

***but folks who do that tend to lower their "value" as lobbyists and consultants afterward.***

Yeah, I know that. i was just hoping that at this point in his career he'd accumulated enough money that he didn't have to work as a lobbyist.

Although as I write this I'm trying to remember if he was one of the ones who hadn't accumulated a bunch of $$$$. Or was that Biden?

OT: just got a call from the DNC trying to get me to "renew my membershipk" so I gave them an earful, emphasizing my L-O-N-G history as a Democrat, hard worker [and donor to the extent of my ability] for Obama, but fully stating my fury and disgust at both Obama and the Dems.

The only thing the caller got in was a feeble attempt at "but he's only been in office for a year," to which I replied "BULLSHIT" and cited him for not trying, and selling out to the Usual Suspects.

The world's no better for my outburst, but I feel better.

BTW: I came over here to find the diary you refer to ["12/18"] at FDL. Help?

Cujo359 said...

It's this one.

Dodd's net worth is listed as being somewhere between $780k and $1.8M by Open Secrets (as of 2008). That's not rich enough to support a family on these days. He'll need a job.

That's yet another reason to think that he retired because he was asked to do it by the Democrats, not because he wanted to.

SickOfItAll said...

Cujo.......your last sentences state exactly what is wrong with Washington.....these people have made it a career! How? How if elections were on the up and up, does the same person get elected for multiple times? Odds are better to win the lottery than that happening. Look at Biden. He has NEVER done anything except politics. Yet he's rich, and so are all his cronies. It's nothing more than massive corruption.

Cujo359 said...

Sorry to have missed this comment earlier, SickOfItAll.

Dodd's family are all fairly well off. I wouldn't call them rich, but they all seem to have had good-paying careers of one sort or another. They're affluent. That he was able to accumulate somewhere near $1M in wealth over all that time, which would include any houses he owns, etc., isn't all that surprising to me. He could have done that any one of a number of ways, and no corruption would have been required. Being a U.S. Senator pays very well. It always has.

Like so many DC politicians, compromises Dodd made were probably in the service of being re-elected. His state is home to a number of large financial corporations. They are a natural part of his constituency, and they can reward politicians handsomely with campaign contributions. If there's corruption in Dodd's past, it has to do with that, not with attaining personal wealth, I'm sure.

To me, "rich" means you don't have to work. He's not there yet. So I suspect he'll continue to be nice to the folks who can give him a nice job afterward. That's the other way corruption often happens in DC.

In fact, right now I wish he was rich. I think he'd be more inclined to do what's right for the country.