HELENA — State Auditor Monica Lindeen on Tuesday crossed herself off the list of possible Democratic candidates for the U.S. Senate.
She had been mentioned as a potential Senate candidate since longtime Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., announced in April that he planned to retire instead of seeking re-election in 2014.
On Saturday, after former Gov. Brian Schweitzer said he wouldn’t run for the Senate seat being vacated by Baucus, more attention focused on Lindeen and some other state elected officials as possible candidates.
Lindeen said Saturday that it was a big decision and one she wanted to talk about with her family.
By Tuesday, she had decided not to run for the Senate.
“It would be an honor to serve Montanans in Washington, and I believe I could bring a much-needed perspective to the national debate,” Lindeen said in a statement.
But she ultimately decided against running for the Senate.
“After discussing this at length with my family, I’ve decided I can best serve Montanans in the job I was just re-elected to do,” Lindeen said. “Montana is my home, my family is here and I don't want to leave it.”
Lindeen, 51, was elected state auditor in 2008 where she serves as Montana’s securities and insurance commissioner. She was re-elected in 2012.
She previously served in the Legislature. Lindeen, who is from Huntley, was elected to the Montana House in 1998 and served four terms.
She ran for the U.S. House in 2006, losing to the Republican incumbent, Rep. Denny Rehberg.
An entrepreneur, Lindeen and some family members formed one of Montana’s first Internet service providers and operated it for a number of years before selling it.