LOS ANGELES — Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said Monday she will run for reelection next year, ending months of speculation about the 84-year-old’s political future amid increasing criticism from progressive activists in deep-blue California.
“I am running for reelection to the Senate,” Feinstein said on an unverified, campaign Twitter account. “Lots more to do: ending gun violence, combating climate change, access to healthcare. I’m all in!”
Story Continued Below
A simulatanous announcement appeared on her campaign’s Facebook page.
Her longtime campaign adviser, Bill Carrick, said Feinstein had always planned to announce her candidacy in the fall — and, with a spate of fundraisers in her home state this week, “felt like, let’s go ahead and do it while she’s in the state and doing things.”
Feinstein, a centrist Democrat, will be seeking a fifth full term in the Senate despite some dissatisfaction on the left, including for her skeptical view of single-payer health care and support for some of President Donald Trump’s earliest nominees.
Despite widespread speculation that she could face a challenge from the party’s left flank, however, no prominent opponent has yet emerged. State Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León and Joseph Sanberg, a wealthy Orange County progressive activist, are both potential candidates, while some long-shot candidates have announced challenges to Feinstein, including a progressive lawyer, Pat Harris.
Feinstein’s reelection rollout was accompanied by an immediate endorsement from the state’s junior senator, Kamala Harris, who is more popular among liberal activists. “I strongly support Dianne’s reelection campaign and am thankful she is again offering to serve our state,” Harris said in a statement posted on Facebook. “What Californians get from Dianne is someone who sticks to her principles and achieves results regardless of powerful opponents, from the assault weapons ban to the CIA torture report.”
Feinstein, who was first elected in a 1992 special election, has maintained relatively favorable public approval ratings in California, despite slipping slightly since Trump’s inauguration. According to a recent poll by the Public Policy Institute of California, 50 percent of likely California voters say Feinstein should not seek reelection. But the survey did not test Feinstein against any potential challengers; .