Speculation swirls about Rep. Moore’s re-election plans

National political media — including National Review, Hotline and Politico.com — are speculating that Dennis Moore will retire at the end of his current term.

The 63-year-old “Blue Dog Democrat” has represented Kansas’s 3rd Congressional District since defeating incumbent Vince Snowbarger in the 1998 elections. He won re-election to his seat last month, after knocking off Republican Nick Jordan in a not-as-close-as-expected campaign.

In a statement provided to the Journal-World, Moore said he was honored to be serving the people of his district, which includes much of Lawrence east of Iowa Street, and intended to continue his work on their behalf.

Burdett Loomis, a political science professor at Kansas University who has extensively researched Moore, said he that had spoken to Moore for an hour and a half on Wednesday, and that he didn’t mention anything about retirement. Loomis hadn’t heard of the rumors until contacted by a reporter.

Loomis said that although the sources for some of the information, including the National Review, can be good predictors of this kind of information, the decision ultimately will rest with Moore.

Loomis said Moore will be working with an entirely Democratic Congress and a Democratic administration for the first time since being elected.

“He’ll be able to do more these next two years than he’s gotten done previously in Congress,” Loomis said.

He said he could see Moore contemplating retirement later, possibly in 2012, after his district faces redistricting, during which it could lose the city of Lawrence.

“I would very much doubt that he is going to run for the Senate,” in 2010, Loomis said, saying that could be a difficult race to interject himself into.