PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson of South Dakota is leaving open the possibility he will not seek re-election in 2014.
After former Republican Gov. Mike Rounds said last week he would challenge the Democratic incumbent, Johnson responded with a statement saying he intended to put together a winning campaign for a fourth term.
But in a telephone press conference with South Dakota reporters on Wednesday, Johnson says he meant he would run a strong campaign if he runs again.
The 65-year-old senator says he will announce sometime next year whether he will run.
Johnson says his health is not a factor. He had surgery six years ago for bleeding in his brain that slowed his speech.