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Young Still Undecided on Ga. Senate Bid

October 3, 2003

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young is keeping Democrats guessing about his plans for a Senate bid, telling congressional Democrats Thursday that he is ``in the process″ of preparing a campaign one day after close friends said he was leaning against running.

Young, who had told Democrats this summer that he planned to run for the Senate seat from Georgia and would launch his campaign in September, said Thursday he still wasn’t ready to announce his candidacy officially.

``I’m in the race, but I’m in the race my way,″ he told reporters after a speech at the Capitol. ``Either you’re in or you’re out, and right now I’m in _ in the process.″

Later, spokeswoman Dianne Wisner said Young planned a news conference in Atlanta Friday morning ``to set the record straight about his intentions.″

On Wednesday, close friends told The Associated Press that Young had confided in them that he was leaning against running for the seat vacated by Democrat Zell Miller. Young also told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that he was trying to figure out his role and, ``I’m not sure if that role should be as a candidate.″

No prominent Democrats have announced for the seat, while four Republicans, including Reps. Mac Collins and Johnny Isakson, are already campaigning. The only announced Democrat is little-known state Sen. Mary Squires of suburban Atlanta.

Young, 71, was a congressman, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Atlanta’s mayor for two terms and a gubernatorial candidate in 1990, losing to Miller in a primary runoff.

Two other potential candidates _ Michelle Nunn, the 36-year-old daughter of former Sen. Sam Nunn, and Rep. Jim Marshall, a freshman Democrat, have said they would not run if Young enters the race.