Rep. Barbara Lee tells colleagues she intends to run for Senate in California

Rep. Barbara Lee tells colleagues she intends to run for Senate in California


Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) on Wednesday informed colleagues that she intends to run for the U.S. Senate in 2024, in line with an individual aware of the dialog, revealing her plans to affix a race that a number of Home Democrats have proven curiosity on this week.

Lee knowledgeable fellow members of the Congressional Black Caucus of her pondering, in line with the individual, who spoke on the situation of anonymity to explain non-public deliberations. Lee’s remarks didn’t quantity to a proper announcement, mentioned this individual, who added that Lee is “getting her geese in a row and figuring issues out” and has spoken to Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) about her intentions.

Requested later about her plans, Lee informed The Washington Put up, “There’s a time to speak about and that’s what I mentioned, you realize, I’ll discuss in regards to the Senate race as soon as the timing is correct. And that’s what I’m gonna do, as soon as the time is correct.” She expressed respect for Feinstein and famous the continuing flooding in her district.

“We have to give her that respect, I don’t care who it’s, and that’s what I’m doing,” she mentioned of Feinstein. Lee added, “We’ll speak about it when the storm passes and when it’s applicable.”

The individual aware of the Wednesday dialog mentioned of Lee, “She is planning to run, it’s not a secret.” This individual added that there isn’t any timeline but for an announcement or launch and likewise famous the continuing pure catastrophe in California amid extreme storms and flooding.

Politico first reported Lee’s remarks. Her closed-door feedback got here a day after fellow Democratic Rep. Katie Porter introduced publicly she would run for the seat.

Rep. Katie Porter broadcasts run for U.S. Senate in California

Feinstein, the oldest sitting senator, filed preliminary paperwork to run for reelection in 2024 final yr, however has not explicitly mentioned whether or not she’s going to search one other time period. California leans closely Democratic and makes use of an all-party main system wherein the highest two candidates advance to the overall election no matter get together affiliation.

On Tuesday, Lee informed The Put up that the Senate is “sorely missing the presence of individuals of colour, Black ladies particularly.”

Ought to Feinstein, 89, step down earlier than the top of her time period, California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) mentioned he would appoint a Black girl to fill the seat. There have been no Black ladies within the Senate since Vice President Harris — a Black girl whose political profession began within the San Francisco Bay space, like Lee — resigned her seat to serve within the Biden administration.

Following Porter’s announcement on Tuesday, Feinstein mentioned in an announcement, “Everyone seems to be after all welcome to throw their hat within the ring, and I’ll make an announcement regarding my plans for 2024 on the applicable time.”

Porter confronted criticism from allies of her potential opponents, together with Democratic Rep. Adam B. Schiff, for asserting her Senate bid in the course of the continued floods within the state.

“I don’t assume you announce your subsequent political steps in the course of a pure catastrophe the place 15 individuals are already lifeless and extra might come,” mentioned one individual aware of Schiff’s pondering on Tuesday. The individual spoke on the situation of anonymity to debate non-public deliberations.

Requested about his intentions on Wednesday, Schiff mentioned he’s targeted on “serving to Californians get by way of these terrible storms.”

In an interview with The Put up on Wednesday, Porter mentioned, “These floods are actually an instance of the continued excessive climate and the implications of getting a Washington that’s damaged, a Washington that works for particular pursuits and Massive Oil.” She added, “I dwell there, I’m elevating my children there. I’m effectively conscious of all of the rain and making an attempt to guarantee that there’s — what can we do as Congress members to assist at the moment?”

Porter mentioned she thinks Feinstein “will make her personal resolution on her personal time. And I’m making my very own resolution and my very own time. And I feel that’s the mutual respect that we should always have for one another.”

“In case you wait round for asking, for girls, I feel it’s necessary to step up and lead if you’re prepared,” Porter added.

One potential competitor paying attention to Lee’s plans is Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), who mentioned he would take her resolution into consideration earlier than making his personal resolution by the top of March.

“I do have a respect for her and the reason for seeing illustration for an African American girl, and that’s one thing I might consider, candidly,” he informed The Put up on Tuesday, noting he’s in conversations with Lee. The 2, like Porter, each hail from the Democratic Caucus’s extra liberal ranks.

Schiff’s potential marketing campaign is taken into account an open secret amongst different California Democrats in Congress, who’ve taken notice of the potential for a crowded area.

“It’s very difficult each time now we have this form of competitors inside the household,” one among his Home colleagues from California, who spoke on the situation of anonymity to speak extra freely in regards to the growing race.

Amy B Wang contributed to this report.