Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) told supporters Wednesday that he will run for Sen. Barbara Mikulski’s (D-MD) Senate seat.
“I am writing to let you know that I have decided to run for the United States Senate from our great State of Maryland,” Van Hollen wrote in the email to supporters. “I am very grateful to the citizens of Maryland’s Eighth Congressional District for the opportunity to represent them and want to thank the many Marylanders who, over the last 48 hours, have called, sent text messages, or emailed to urge me to run for the United States Senate. A more formal announcement will come later, but I wanted to let you know of my plans.”
Van Hollen’s announcement comes just a few days after Mikulski announced that she would not seek a sixth term in the Senate. Van Hollen has long been mentioned in Democratic circles as a rising star in politics and is seen as a possible future leader of the Democratic party in the House or perhaps a United States senator.
Democrats are confident that they’ll be able to keep the seat. Other names mentioned as possible strong contenders include former Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown (D) and Rep. Donna Edwards (D). Liberal outside groups like Democracy for America have voiced support for Edwards to jump into the race.
This post was updated.