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Wow: Colorado's Democratic Governor Retiring After One Term

9:54 PM, Jan 5, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
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Another Democrat to abandon statewide office:

CO Gov. Bill Ritter (D) will not seek a second term, a campaign source tells Hotline OnCall, becoming the first Dem governor to announce he will step down.

Easily elected in '06 over ex-Rep. Bob Beauprez (R), Ritter faced economic uncertainty during his 3 years in office, and most public polls show his approval rating near parity.

Ritter's departure could leave Dems scrambling for a candidate just 11 months before Election Day, but the party has strong potential candidates.

This certainly isn't good news for Democratic Colorado senator Michael Bennet. A December poll showed him trailing a Republican challenger in the 2010 election by 9 points.