Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) told lawmakers she is running for Senate in a closed-door Congressional Black Caucus meeting on Wednesday, according to Politico.
Lee’s remarks come a day after Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA) launched her Senate campaign for the same seat — currently held by longtime Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA).
Feinstein is a trailblazer who’s served in the Senate since 1992. But the 89-year-old has recently faced questions about her cognitive health, which has been an ongoing topic of coverage in several news outlets.
Many are expecting Feinstein to step down after completing her term this year. But Porter’s bid and Lee’s remarks come before an official announcement from the long-serving senator on whether she’ll seek another term.
“Everyone is of course welcome to throw their hat in the ring, and I will make an announcement concerning my plans for 2024 at the appropriate time,” Feinstein said in a statement Tuesday. “Right now I’m focused on ensuring California has all the resources it needs to cope with the devastating storms slamming the state and leaving more than a dozen dead.”
If Feinstein decides to retire, the empty California Senate seat will be a hot commodity, as multiple Democrats will likely line up for her position. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) has also previously expressed interest in the seat.