This is pure speculation on my part, based on no inside knowledge.
Henry Sanders is a bright, charismatic and ambitious young politician. Last month, I found myself wondering what office he would pursue next, since he did not become the Democratic Party's nominee for Lieutenant Governor. He lives in Waunakee, so Mayor of Madison is out.
I found myself idly wondering if he might challenge Kathleen Falk for Dane County Executive in 2013. But then I thought I remembered that she endorsed him for LG, and even co-hosted a fundraiser for him at the Brink Lounge over the summer. He doesn't seem like a back-stabber to me, so I couldn't imagine him running against Falk after she supported his LG bid.
Now, however, I find myself wondering if she is stepping down to make room for him to run for her job in 2011, while he still has some positive name recognition from his recent campaign.
I don't think Falk will run for Herb Kohl's Senate seat in 2012, even assuming Russ Feingold holds onto his in 2010. I suspect she will find a lucrative job in the private sector (perhaps as a bicycle industry lobbyist).