updated 8/15/2009 10:48:47 PM ET 2009-08-16T02:48:47

Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle will not seek re-election in 2010, a person who was informed of the decision told The Associated Press on Saturday.

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The source, who was not authorized to announce it, told The AP that Doyle, a Democrat, would make the announcement public in a Monday news conference and that he would serve the rest of his second four-year term.

Doyle's office had released a one-sentence statement Saturday saying he would announce his future plans Monday. Because he has not committed to seeking a third term, speculation has swirled that he would not run again. Doyle spokeswoman Carol Andrews would not comment beyond Saturday's statement.

A number of Republicans already are running for governor, most notably Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker and former U.S. Rep. Mark Neumann. Expected Democratic candidates include U.S. Rep. Ron Kind, Lt. Gov. Barbara Lawton and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

It has been a rough year for Doyle.

Faced with a record high $6.6 billion budget shortfall, Doyle raised anger among Republicans and the business community for increasing some taxes. Doyle also upset state employees by mandating 16 days of unpaid leave over the next two years.

But he avoided raising general sales or income taxes, a move many saw as a sign he was positioning himself for another run. He also has been aggressively raising money, having collected $2 million.

The state's economy also has been struggling this year. General Motors pulled out of Janesville in April, Milwaukee-based Harley-Davidson has said it would cut hundreds of jobs and Chrysler plans to pull out of Kenosha in 2010.

And earlier this month, Doyle's chief legal counsel resigned because she was not a licensed attorney in Wisconsin.

Approval rating in 30s
Charles Franklin, professor of political science at University of Wisconsin-Madison, noted that Doyle had struggled with his approval rating, which Franklin said had fallen into the low 30s in the past few months.

"It's not at all clear anybody could have been a very popular governor given the budget and economic crises he faced in both terms," said Franklin, a co-developer of pollster.com.

Without Doyle in the race, Franklin said, Democrats could set a new course for the state, rather than defending the governor's record.

Walker, the Milwaukee County executive since 2002, released a statement saying it would be in the best interest of taxpayers for Doyle not to seek a third term.

"Wisconsinites want government to live within its means and to set spending priorities that reflect their priorities, rather than seek ever increasing amounts of taxpayer funds for programs that serve few if any," Walker said.

The son of a federal judge, Doyle, 63, has never lost a statewide election. He served three terms as attorney general before running for governor the first time in 2002. Doyle has been a strong advocate for stem cell research, expanding state health insurance coverage and high-speed rail.

Doyle was an early backer of President Barack Obama and campaigned aggressively in Wisconsin and across the country.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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