Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) has announced he won’t run for president. The moderate said facing so-called political celebrities like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama made the odds “longer than I felt I could responsibly pursue.”

Los Angeles Times:

Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana, a centrist Democrat who had prepared for years to seek the presidency, announced Saturday that he had decided not to run — underscoring how daunting it is to build support in the shadow of the celebrity candidates who dominate both parties.

Bayh had announced two weeks ago that he was establishing a committee to explore a presidential bid. But in a statement issued Saturday, he indicated that it would be hard to compete with Hillary Rodham Clinton’s huge fundraising machinery and Barack Obama’s star power if both senators decided to run.

“The odds were always going to be very long for a relatively unknown candidate like myself, a little bit like David and Goliath,” Bayh said. “And whether there were too many Goliaths or whether I’m just not the right David, the fact remains that at the end of the day, I concluded that due to circumstances beyond our control the odds were longer than I felt I could responsibly pursue.”

Bayh got a leg up this fall when former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner, another moderate Democrat, decided not to run for president. But Bayh’s struggle for traction also illustrates the challenge he would have faced running in the liberal-leaning Democratic Party as a moderate without a passion-inspiring message.

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