The news today, reported by numerous sources
, that Indiana U.S. Senator Evan Bayh has decided not to seek a third term, reminded me of some archival tape I had stored away.
In early 2007, I was freelance reporting in Washington, DC, and ran into Evan's father, Birch Bayh, himself a former U.S. senator. I asked him about his son's decision, just a few weeks earlier, to not seek the Democratic nomination for president. (Evan Bayh had opened a presidential exploratory committee in late 2006.)
Birch Bayh told me he didn't play a part in his son's decision on whether or not to run for president. And he said he wouldn't play a part in the decision if his son considered a future presidential run.
FATHER & SON RETIREMENTS:
Evan Bayh is 54 years old now, and will be 55 when he leaves the Senate in January. His father's Senate career ended in 1981, after he was defeated by Dan Quayle, then a congressman and later the vice president. At the time, Birch Bayh was 52 years old.