(TheConservativeTimes.org) – Having served in the Senate for three terms, Sen. Ben Cardin (D. Md.) will not seek reelection in 2024. For eighteen years, the senator has been a reliable vote for the liberal side of the aisle and has the ability to negotiate on bipartisan legislation when called to, a quality becoming a rarer commodity among lawmakers.
The seventy-nine-year-old senator said, “I am an optimist, but also a realist,” when asked about his decision. Having served on behalf of the state of Maryland since 1987, Sen. Cardin says he is “proud” for all he’s done for his state.
“I have given my heart and soul to (Maryland),” Sen. Cardin said.
Senator Chuck Schumer (D. NY) recently requested Sen. Cardin fill the vacancy left by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D. Calif.) on the Senate Judiciary Committee temporarily while she recovers from shingles, but the attempt was blocked.
Without another candidate currently lined up to take the nomination, the seat will leave open a chance to change the Senate. The slim majority in the Senate could very well be upended with only one seat.
Sen. Cardin is one of three Senate Democrats who announced they won’t be running in 2024 for reelection. Alongside Cardin are Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D. Calif.) and Debbie Stabenow (D. Mich.). Sen. Stabenow’s seat in Michigan is a competitive option to flip to Republican in 2024, while the Maryland seat Cardin holds is considered a safe seat in the Democratic stronghold.
A number of democrats may be likely to seek election to the vacant Maryland seat. Former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, has been asked about his intentions to run for the open seat in 2024 and denied interest. In 2022 Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnel (R. Ky.) pushed then-governor Hogan to campaign for Senate, but he resisted being recruited then as well.
With 23 seats in the Senate, out of 34 total, Democrats have to defend in the next year to keep the slim majority (51-49) they hold, they won’t likely have to worry about Maryland being one of them.
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