Dukakis Won’t Seek 4th Term in Mass. : Says He Will Announce His Long-Term Plans Later This Week

Associated Press

Gov. Michael S. Dukakis announced today that he will not seek election in 1990 to another term in the Massachusetts Statehouse.

“This will be my last term as governor of Massachusetts,” he said.

The three-term Democrat, the unsuccessful 1988 presidential candidate, gave no immediate indication of his long-term plans, including whether he will drop out of politics altogether or seek the presidency again in 1992. He said he will announce further plans later this week.

He said he intends to spend the next two years fulfilling his responsibilities and wrapping up his programs.


Dukakis said his loss in the presidential race had little impact on his decision. Even if he had not run for President, he probably would have decided not to seek a fourth four-year term, he said.

In recent weeks, Dukakis had been urged by fellow Democrats to announce his plans so they could begin making their political plans for the governorship.

“One has to make a decision; I’ve made that decision,” he said. “It seemed to me desirable to make the decision now, rather than later,” he added.

Asked for a hint to his future plans, Dukakis would say only: “Public policy and public service is what I’m all about; it’s what I love.”

At age 55, Dukakis is midway through his third four-year term as governor of Massachusetts. If he completes his current term, he will have served longer as the state’s governor than any of his predecessors.

In recent weeks, speculation has mounted about Dukakis and his plans, with some saying he would seek a rematch with Bush in 1992 or would run for governor again or would drop out of politics for some sort of academic position.

In a recent poll, Dukakis appeared to enjoy a commanding 67% to 27% lead in popularity statewide over such a likely Democratic challenger as Boston Mayor Raymond Flynn.