Chalk One Up?

North Dakota Governor John Hoeven announced today that he is running for the Senate seat being vacated by Byron Dorgan. Hoeven is a third-term governor who won in 2008 with 74 percent of the vote. He is the most popular politician in North Dakota and must be considered an odds-on favorite to win the Senate race in November.
Hoeven sounded like a conservative earlier today:

In his speech, the governor was critical of “cap-and-trade” energy legislation and a federal health care overhaul proposal that Hoeven said would saddle state governments with billions of dollars in extra costs.
He suggested a menu of tax credits that would allow people to “pick your own health insurance plan and your own health care provider” instead of relying on “government-run health care.”
“Washington’s approach is to write a 2,000-page bill that puts the government between you and your doctor. Now, I ask you, is that common sense?” Hoeven asked as the crowd hooted and booed.

Hoeven is considered a moderate, however; I hadn’t realized it, but he is a former Democrat. Of course, so am I, so maybe we shouldn’t hold it against him. For now, the most salient point is that barring accident, he is a virtual lock to reclaim a Senate seat for the GOP.