Republican Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell announced Wednesday that he would not seek re-election to a third term, citing concerns about his health. Campbell underwent treatment for prostate cancer last year and went to the hospital twice in the last week because of chest pains.

Campbell 's decision also comes on the heels of the resignation of Ginnie Kontnik, his long-time chief of staff. A former employee in Campbell 's office has accused Kontnik of giving him an inflated bonus so that he could give her a kickback.

Last week also produced a credible Democratic challenger to Campbell when wealthy entrepreneur and think tank founder Rutt Bridges announced his candidacy. Although Bridges has never run for office, he said that he will spend whatever it takes from his personal fortune to win the race.

Now that the seat is open, a number of candidates of both parties are looking at the race. On the Republican side, Gov. Bill Owens said he is considering running and has the right of first refusal, meaning that other Republican hopefuls will not make a move

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