Sen. Evan Bayh suggested Thursday that it was time for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to step down.Bayh returns from Iraq.
The Indiana Democrat made his comments to both National Public Radio and The Indianapolis Star as a "no-confidence" movement gained momentum in the Senate.
In recent days, Republican senators John McCain of Arizona, Trent Lott of Mississippi, Susan Collins of Maine, Norm Coleman of Minnesota and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska have expressed doubts about Rumsfeld's ability to wage the war in Iraq.
Bayh went a bit further. Pressed on NPR on whether he personally believed Rumsfeld should step down, Bayh said, "I do."
In an interview later with The Indianapolis Star, Bayh said he isn't "a big fan of calling for people's scalps when things don't go well.
"(But) people have to be held accountable," he said. "Significant mistakes have been made. Lives are at risk."
Still, asked how long Rumsfeld could last, Bayh said: "I think he'll stay on as long as the president thinks he's serving him well."
View from the cheap seats
Democrat to Watch: There are fewer and fewer after every election, but my money is on Indiana Senator Evan Bayh. Elected in 1998, Bayh is only coming out of his first term, but has already amassed solid credentials as a centrist Democrat with common-sense proposals.Updates as necessary
The Senator from the very “red” state of Indiana is chairmen of the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC), serves on six Senate committees, and will be very appealing to party movers and shakers when the search for a candidate for 2008 revels that if the answer is Hillary, than their fate is one of continued minority status in Washington.