Jerry Springer has decided not to run for Senate in 2004.
"As long as I'm doing that show, my message, no matter how sincere and no matter how heartfelt, does not get through to the people I need to reach," he said.
Springer, a Democrat, had said he would quit his show should he run for the Senate seat held by Republican George Voinovich since 1998. It would have been his first run for office since he served as mayor of Cincinnati from 1978-81.
Springer, 59, had crisscrossed Ohio the last six months, speaking at Democratic dinners and gauging support for a Senate bid. He had said he would run if he could "break through the clutter of the show" and be a formidable candidate.
"That separation obviously hasn't taken place and would not take place in time for this election," he said, his voice occasionally breaking.