February 3rd, 2010
08:17 AM ET
4 years ago

Ex-GOP senator expected to challenge Bayh

Former Sen. Dan Coats, R-Indiana, is expected to announce Wednesday that he will challenge Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Indiana, in November, a Republican source told CNN.
Former Sen. Dan Coats, R-Indiana, is expected to announce Wednesday that he will challenge Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Indiana, in November, a Republican source told CNN.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Former Sen. Dan Coats, R-Indiana, is expected to announce Wednesday that he will challenge Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Indiana, in November, a Republican source told CNN.

Coats held the Senate seat that Bayh now occupies from 1989 to 1999.

It is a big recruiting success for Senate Republicans, who hope that voter frustration with President Barack Obama's handling of health care and the economy will translate into electoral wins in the mid-term elections.

Republican Scott Brown's surprising victory in last month's Massachusetts special election has given the GOP hope of evening the odds in the Senate. Democrats control the chamber, 60-40, with the support of two independents. When Brown is sworn in next week, Democrats will hold the chamber by one less vote, effectively ending their supermajority in the chamber.

Coats was appointed to the Senate seat after Sen. Dan Quayle was elected vice president in 1988. Coats went on to win a special election to serve the rest of Quayle's unexpired term, as well as his own full six-year term. Coats chose to retire instead of run for re-election. Bayh won the seat in November 1998 and is seeking a third term.

The GOP source spoke on the condition of anonymity.

The former senator was ambassador to Germany from August 2001 to February 2005 in President George W. Bush's administration.

Before joining the Senate, Coats served in the House from 1981 to 1988. He is currently a senior policy adviser at King & Spalding.

"Howey Politics Indiana" first reported Coats' candidacy late Tuesday.


Filed under: 2010 • Dan Coats • Evan Bayh
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. Tom Moore

    There will be no roll back to yesterday. The ways of the last Administration and the GOP controlled Congress is what keep us on a course to destruction. This is the first time we have been able to take a deep breath since Bush and we definitely will ot return to the ways of the Know Nothing, Party of No, that destroyed the American Dream.

    February 3, 2010 03:19 am at 3:19 am |
  2. Reda StCyr

    It is a big recruiting success for Senate Republicans, who hope that voter frustration with President Barack Obama's handling of health care and the economy will translate into electoral wins in the mid-term elections.

    I take issue with the above statement, which is exactly what the President talked about with the GOP meeting of incompetent minds on friday when he called not just them out for the lies & distortions of fact but media of all segments for carrying it

    February 3, 2010 04:07 am at 4:07 am |
  3. Reda StCyr

    How about a little more tuth in your reporting guys?

    February 3, 2010 04:09 am at 4:09 am |
  4. Willy Brown

    Run. We need someone to help stop the Obamai machine of trolls.

    February 3, 2010 05:33 am at 5:33 am |
  5. Scott, Tucson

    The ones that need to go for the good of the country and the Democratic party are Pelosi, Reid, Schumer, Frank, Rangel, Murtha and in 2012 obama. At least they have proven that their far left ideology doesn't not work here, maybe in Cuba or N. Korea but not here.

    February 3, 2010 06:38 am at 6:38 am |
  6. Conservative Voice

    Coats may have a chance to stop Bayh...it would be an interesting election. They both are strong candidates in IN

    February 3, 2010 06:39 am at 6:39 am |
  7. PEACE ON EARTH

    We WILL NOT live our lives in FEAR.

    The Rethuglicans and those in the Pentagon who follow the Rethuglicans WILL NOT make US afraid of our own shadows.

    THINK FOR YOURSELVES

    February 3, 2010 07:11 am at 7:11 am |
  8. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    While I have been disappointed in blue dog Evan Bayh, the thought of returning this seat to another right wingnut who's main purpose would be to obstruct instead of moving the country forward, is very frightening.

    February 3, 2010 08:43 am at 8:43 am |
  9. Jill-IN

    Just what we need in an Indiana Senator – a professional lobbyist. When will it end.

    February 3, 2010 08:45 am at 8:45 am |
  10. ran

    Hopefully the great people of Indiana if upset with how Washington is not working they will either vote for an Independent or a true Democrat and not do what the ill informed people of Mass. did and vote in another fear/hate/obstructionist/purist Republican to continue their "NO" policy.

    If you want true change then either vote for a true Democrat or an Independent in 2010/2012. If not all you will be doing is rewarding the Republicans for their fear/hate/obstructionism and bring back gridlock.

    February 3, 2010 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  11. GOPer

    Great!!!

    Bayh Is a weasel, acts like a weasel and looks like a weasel with that ridiculous hair cut…

    February 3, 2010 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  12. gary davis Harbor Oregon proud american

    to old and to stupid he got voted out why would they want to vote hime back in ? another republican party member of NO AND PURITY whities only :)

    February 3, 2010 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  13. MsDp

    Sorry, but I don't think it will really matter who wins this seat. At this present time, I can't tell if Bayh is a democrat or a republician. So with this race, there will be no real change. When Bayh votes, you never which side he will support until he actually speaks. It leaves a nervous pit in the stomach. Bayh is just as conservative as Coats. With this said, may the best man win!!!

    February 3, 2010 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  14. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Oh yeah, the Rethugs think that anybody running against a Dem can win the seat. Brown was a fluke of nature, don't believe the hype.

    February 3, 2010 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  15. Mark

    It would serve Evan Bayh right. With that being said, how does the Obama's Administration handling of healthcare make a Republican challenger to Bayh a success? Bayh has been against a lot of what the Administration has been trying to do, including healthcare.

    February 3, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  16. Jimmy Sanborn

    Republicans are only representing their party. When they all form a block they are only representing the few thwn the many. i am a Republican that is tired of the Grid Lock in Washington. I will be either voting independent or Democrat in November. I am tired of the Republicans not wanting to comprimise. It is an important element in todays world. COMPRIMISE The Democrats are doing it why not the Republicans.

    Sarah Palin is a JOKE!!

    February 3, 2010 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  17. NVa Native

    Evan Bayh has been a weak link for the Dems, it's best to wait and see how the tea-baggers demand submission from Coats. As this is Quayle country that explains Bayh being a du-fuss, clearly not much can be expected from this part of Indiana.

    February 3, 2010 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  18. www.firedoglake.com

    Bayh is a corporatist sellout.

    February 3, 2010 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  19. nicholas

    the GOP doesn't get it, America is looking for fresh thinking......not recycled material

    February 3, 2010 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  20. larry

    Coats was a jerk, a Bush lapdog but Bayh is owned by big Pharma and is more republican than democrat. Bayh has no guts.

    February 3, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  21. Kevin in Ohio

    Time for a change, Indiana! Lets find a way to say "no" to this corrupt and arrogant and dangerous administration this Novemeber.

    February 3, 2010 10:44 am at 10:44 am |