Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd to retire

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., arrives for a Democratic policy luncheon on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2008. The U.S. Senate is scheduled to vote on the financial rescue plan late Wednesday. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

January 6, 2010 9:14:41 AM PST
Connecticut Democrat Christopher Dodd says he won't seek re-election to the U.S. Senate, ending a more than 40-year career in Congress. Dodd made the announcement Wednesday at his home in East Haddam.

The decision marks an abrupt turnaround. Earlier this week, Dodd said he was committed to running for a sixth term.

Dodd's political stock fell after a controversy involving low-rate mortgages he received under a VIP program, the financial meltdown and his failed 2008 presidential bid.

The 65-year-old chairman of the Senate Banking Committee was trailing former Republican Congressman Rob Simmons in the polls.

Connecticut's popular Democratic attorney general, Richard Blumenthal, is set to officially announce later Wednesday he will run for Dodd's seat.