Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) asks questions during a joint Senate hearing on homeland security and government affairs, and Senate rules and administration, related to the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol on March 3, 2021 in Washington, DC, to discuss.
Greg Nash | Getty Images
Missouri Republican Senator Roy Blunt said Monday he would not seek re-election in 2022.
“After 14 general election wins – three for the county office, seven for the United States House of Representatives and four national elections – I won’t be a candidate for re-election to the United States Senate next year,” said Blunt in a video on Twitter .
The 71-year-old Blunt was elected to the Senate in 2010 after more than a decade in the House of Representatives.
Political analysts expect the seat to remain in GOP hands. It is vital for Republicans to protect them as they push to win back the majority they lost in Georgia in January’s runoff elections.
The Senate is now evenly split, but Vice President Kamala Harris’ groundbreaking vote puts Democrats in control of the chamber.
“We will hold this seat,” Florida Senator Rick Scott, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said in a statement.
Blunt is “very much missed in the Senate,” said Scott. “The NRSC will work tirelessly to ensure that Senator Blunt’s successor maintains his legacy of free enterprise and small government.”
Republican Sens. Rob Portman of Ohio and Richard Shelby of Alabama also announced this year that they would not run for re-election.
Blunt is the senior Republican on the Senate Committee and the chairman of the Senate Committee on Republican Politics.
In his Monday morning video, Blunt didn’t give a specific reason why he didn’t seek re-election.
“In every job Missourians have given me, I’ve tried to do my best,” said Blunt. “With nearly 12,000 votes in Congress, I sure have not been right every time, but you really are making that decision based on the information you have at the time.”
“There is still a lot to be done and I look forward to every day this year and next as I continue to work for you in the Senate.”
“Another lesson I learned here: Finish strong. And that’s what I intend to do,” said the Senator.
Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Chairman, R-Ky., Said in a statement that Blunt’s resignation “will be a loss to the Republican conference and the entire Senate.”
McConnell praised Blunt’s work during the coronavirus pandemic, saying, “No single senator has done more to advance testing efforts or the historic and successful sprint on vaccines.”
“Sen. Blunt has undertaken so much important work for Missouri and our country and has been a tremendous asset to all of his colleagues. I am very sorry he is stepping down, but I am glad the country has two years left has to benefit from it. ” his talent, “said McConnell.
Blunt won his first Senate race by a wide margin in 2010 and held his place against Democratic challenger Jason Kander in 2016.
Several Democrats have already announced their campaigns for Blunt’s seat in 2022.
After Blunt’s announcement, Kander tweeted that he would not run for the Senate seat again, but would instead support the Democratic candidate.