Rep. Jamie Raskin said Sunday he will decide whether to run for the Senate before July 4 and is preparing to possibly become the last Democrat in the House of Representatives to announce a Senate campaign.
The Maryland Democrat — who gained national attention for serving on the committee of inquiry into the events of January 6, 2021 and for his role in the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump — said CNN’s State of the Union that he’s still debating whether to enter the race to succeed outgoing Democratic Senator Ben Cardin.
“I haven’t made up my mind. I love the House of Representatives. I love the people I minister with and I love being in the House of People,” Raskin said. “But as some of my colleagues in the House have pointed out, will these Senate seats only vacate every 25 or 30 years.”
“A lot of people encourage me to watch it because there are certain Senate constitutional functions that the House of Representatives doesn’t have, like advice and consent, Supreme Court nominations, court endorsements — lots of things I’m interested in,” he continued. “And so I’m seriously considering it, but haven’t made up my mind yet.”
Raskin said he hopes to make a decision on his candidacy before July 4, adding that the May 2024 Democratic primary for Cardin’s Senate seat is 11 months away.
Should he decide to run, Raskin would likely be the most forward-thinking candidate in the Democratic primary for Cardin’s seat. Already in the main race are former prosecutor and Prince George’s County executive Angela Alsobrooks, co-founder of Total Wine & More, Rep. David Trone, and Will Jawando, Member of Montgomery County Council.
Last week, Rep. Steny Hoyer announced he was officially in favour Alsobrooks called it the Democratic Party’s best chance of electing a black woman to the Senate — a chamber that has not had a black representative since Kamala Harris resigned to take her vice presidential seat in January 2021.
Hoyer, a Democrat who also represents Maryland, served as House Majority Leader when his party controlled the chamber — making his support in the Senate race valuable.
“Of course Steny Hoyer is my friend and that’s why I spoke to him. I’ve talked to all my colleagues about it,” Raskin said of his potential Senate nomination. “I mean, we have great political leaders in Maryland, and I wouldn’t run against anyone.”
“I mean, it’s entirely based on my experience trying to defend our democracy and our freedom and the Bill of Rights against the Trump movement, which I think poses a great threat,” he added added.
Raskin has served in the House of Representatives since 2017 and before that in the Maryland State Senate from 2007 to 2016.
The House Democrat said in April he was in remission after undergoing treatment for a “serious but curable form of cancer” called diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, a common type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma , which occurs in a person’s lymphatic system. Raskin said Sunday that he now has a “clean bill of health.”