Sen. Mike Johanns, a Nebraska Republican regarded as one of the Senate's more plain-spoken, collegial members, said Monday he would not seek re-election next year.
The announcement came as a surprise. "That's enough," the first-term senator told Associated Press. . "We just felt, both Steph (his wife) and I, that it was time. That's really what we talked most about. We always said we'd know when it was time. And it was time."
Johanns was governor of Nebraska from 1999 to 2005, then became President George W. Bush's agriculture secretary.
A conservative, he was known for a willingness to work with Democrats to find common ground, and was one of the "Gang of Eight" that sought a budget deal.