After trading barbs with Scott Brown—the Republican who won his father's Senate seat in what must have felt like a hit-and-run accident to Rhode Island Rep. Patrick Kennedy—Patick released a video late Thursday saying he won't seek reelection.

Patrick's announcement showed up on his website late Thursday and will be broadcast as a TV ad in Rhode Island on Sunday. Kennedy invoked his family's legacy and said he'll remain committed to public service, but with "a new direction," perhaps with non-profits. Though Patrick's staff denies his retirement is related to his father's death or last year's stint in alcoholic rehab, the video alludes to "difficult" years, and a source told Politico "you can't deny that it's [his father's death] had an impact on him." Or maybe he's just sick of politics—Patrick has held elected offices since the age of 21.


A representative told Politico Patrick "wouldn't rule out" running for another office in the future. Though Patrick's district is considered solidly Democratic, Republicans were grooming a strong challenger. Analysts and Rhode Islanders are left scratching their heads. [Politico]