Ga. Senator Saxby Chambliss retiring in 2014, will not seek third term

From the Washington Post’s Saxby Chambliss retiring in 2014:

Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), one of the Republicans most vulnerable to a conservative primary challenge, will retire in 2014 rather than seek a third term.

Chambliss denied in a statement Friday morning that the potential primary was a factor in his decision, saying he was confident he would have won re-election.

“Instead, this is about frustration, both at a lack of leadership from the White House and at the dearth of meaningful action from Congress, especially on issues that are the foundation of our nation’s economic health,” Chambliss said. “The debt-ceiling debacle of 2011 and the recent fiscal-cliff vote showed Congress at its worst and, sadly, I don’t see the legislative gridlock and partisan posturing improving anytime soon.”

From Jim Galloway at the AJC, U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss: Frustration with Washington drove him out:

Chambliss’ announcement will immediately set off an avalanche of Republican candidates who will seek to replace him.

At least two GOP House members from Georgia, Paul Broun of Athens and Tom Price of Roswell, have been contemplating primary challenges to Chambliss, who has been criticized for leading the bipartisan “Gang of Six” effort to broker a deal to address a $16 trillion federal deficit.

There’s a whole series of lively posts today by my colleagues at Peach Pundit, including a statement from Jack Kingston’s campaign office that reads in part:

Serving the State of Georgia is one of the greatest honors of my life. From the bounties of our fields and the unparalleled might of our soldiers to the top-notch research of our universities and the global commerce churning through our ports, I have worked to strengthen some of our greatest assets. I have also fought to cut the federal budget and reduce the size of government so we may free future generations from a life indebted to China. Over the coming days, I will discuss with my family and meditate through prayer on how best to continue that service.

While most of the immediate focus will be on Republicans testing the waters, we should also keep in mind that a Democrat might have a shot.