Rep. Brad Miller (D-N.C.) announced Thursday that he will not seek reelection in 2012, a move that helps Democrats avert a primary between two members.
Miller’s district was dismantled under the North Carolina GOP’s redistricting plan, and he was put into a district with Rep. David Price (D-N.C.).
Miller had three choices: Run in a heavily GOP district that includes much of his current territory but not his home, run in a primary against Price in which he would be an underdog, or retire.
In the end, he chose the last option.
In announcing his decision, Miller seemed to lament Price’s decision to seek another term. He said Price, who is 71 years old, has suggested that he plans to seek only one more term, and that he thought Price might step aside two years earlier now that the two men were drawn together.
“...I believed that he would retire a term earlier than he intended in the circumstances,” Miller said. “That obviously has not happened. David has made it very clear that he intends to run again.”
He continued: “I have begun campaigns in the past as the underdog, and campaigned with great energy, enthusiasm and joy. There would be no joy in this campaign.”
Miller is the 12th House Democrat to announce that he will not seek reelection. Another eight are running for other office.
On the GOP side, six Republicans are retiring outright and seven are running for other office.
Miller’s announcement comes the same day North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue (D) is set to announce that she will not seek reelection. Miller’s name has been tossed around as a potential statewide candidate before, but it’s not clear whether he would have any interest in running to replace Perdue.