— Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., announced Thursday. That she will not seek re-election in 2024. Setting the stage for a competitive Senate race in a key. Battleground state in a presidential election year.
Stabenow, 72, said in a statement that he was “inspired by a new generation of leaders” to “pass the torch to the U.S. Senate.” He said he will complete his six-year term by January 3, 2025.
She noted that she had “blazed the trail. By becoming the ‘first’ woman to achieve historic milestones as an elected official. Including the honor of being the first woman elected to the US Senate from Michigan.” But I have always believed that this is not the case. A ‘second ‘ and a ‘third’ is enough to be ‘first’.
For the next two years, he said. He will focus on continuing his work representing Michiganders. Including shepherding the next five years of farm bills.
About life after Congress, Stabenow said, “When my term ends, I want to begin a new chapter in my life. That includes spending precious time with my amazing 96-year-old mother. And continuing to serve our state outside of elected office. My wonderful family. .”
Stebeno’s retirement opens up the seat for a Democratic bench in Michigan. Democrats, including Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, were re-elected to several statewide offices in November. Others whose names will be in the mix: Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist. Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, Attorney General Dana Nessel. And state Sen. Mallory McMorrow. Who gained a national following last year. After her pushback against anti-Semitism went viral. LGBTQ rhetoric. Democratic U.S. Reps. Elisa Slotkin and Haley Stevens may also be eyeing the campaign.
A spokesman for Whitmer said he would not seek the seat.
“As governor of this great state for the next four years. I look forward to serving our state after Debbie [Stabeno’s] term ends. And beyond,” the full second term he won last fall.
Other Democrats left the door a little more open
A Democratic strategist familiar. With Gilchrist’s thinking said he is not ruling out a bid. McMorrow issueda statement praising Stabenow as a “trailblazer.” But did not say whether he was interested in the job. Meanwhile, Slotkin is “considering” a Senate run. According to a source familiar with his thinking.
A source familiar with Stevens’ thinking said Stevens is talking to supporters. And advisers about a Senate bid and will likely commission an election.
“He is considering it,” said the source. Who spoke on condition of anonymity without permission to discuss internal discussions. Stevens, who won a competitive primary and general election last year. Has proven over three election cycles that he is a prolific fundraiser.
Rep. Debbie Dingell also isn’t ruling out a run for the seat, a source familiar with her thinking said. The source said Dingell and other Michigan Democrats Debbie were surprised by Stabenow’s announcement.
Early speculation is also likely to focus . On U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. The former mayor of South Bend, Indiana. Who moved to Michigan after his failed 2020 presidential campaign. Buttigieg’s advisers have long played down the significance of her . Established residency, noting that her in-laws live in the state. And saying she and her husband want to be close to family while raising their children.
Buttigieg issued a statement Thursday calling Stabenow “a force in the Senate.” Who “fights every day to improve the lives of Michiganders and all Americans.”
“I am focused on serving the president in my role as transportation secretary. And am not seeking another job,” Buttigieg added. “We are working hard to rebuild the nation’s infrastructure. Grow the economy and create good-paying jobs.”
On the Republican side, Republican-elect John James, who lost to Stabenow in 2018. And won a House seat in November, is being mentioned as a possibility, as are other Republicans in the state. Legislature and congressional delegation. Tudor Dixon, who lost to Whitmer in last year’s gubernatorial race. Could be another possibility, along with other far-right Republicans.
Who failed in their bid to win statewide office in 2022.
“Debbie Stabeno’s retirement gives Republicans an opportunity to rally behind a strong candidate. get to work on the ground now, and prove why Joe Biden’s record of runaway spending. And failure is hurting hard-working Michiganders.” Dixon posted in a series of tweets Thursday.
Dixon’s tweets did not state whether he was exploring a run; A person familiar. With his thinking said he has not ruled anything out. Businessman Kevin Ringe, who lost to Dixon in last year’s GOP. Primary for governor, is “looking.” At the race and has received calls encouraging him to run. A source familiar with his political interests said.
Stabenow has served in the Senate since 2001 and before served in the House since 1997. Before he came to Congress, he served in both the state House and Senate.
He held several Democratic leadership roles, including chair of the Senate. Democratic Policy Committee and chair of the Agriculture Committee.
He has worked with Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich., since entering Congress in 2015.
Stabenow is among 21 Senate Democrats whose terms expire in 2025. Democrats face an uphill battle to keep their majority in the next election.