House Democrats were already facing a steep uphill battle to retain their majority in the 2022 midterm elections, and that challenge has been compounded by vulnerable incumbents announcing plans to retire or run for a different office.
Another House Democrat, Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), is expected to soon announce her intention to step away from the House and make a run for the Senate, adding to a growing list of those hitting the exits prior to the midterms, Breitbart reported.
If the reports prove true, Murphy will be facing her own improbable challenge of attempting to unseat incumbent Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) in a state turning increasingly red with each election cycle.
Launching a Senate run
According to “people familiar with the matter,” Rep. Murphy is expected to announce her plans to take on Sen. Rubio at some point in early June, Axios reported.
However, according to Murphy campaign spokesperson Lauren Calmet, “Rep. Murphy has not made a decision on whether to run for the U.S. Senate.”
The outlet noted a few favorable factors for Murphy, such as her ability to successfully fundraise and the fact that announcing an early run could block other Democrats from crowding the primary field.
Furthermore, in a party that has increasingly embraced socialism, Murphy, whose family fled communist Vietnam when she was a child, has distinctly distanced herself from the far-left by proclaiming herself to be a “proud capitalist,” which could negate efforts by Rubio and the GOP to link her closely with the emerging socialist wing of the Democratic Party.
House Democrats headed for the door
Breitbart noted that Murphy was included on the National Republican Congressional Committee’s (NRCC) “exit list” that was released in March of particularly vulnerable House Democrats who were expected to either retire or abandon their seats in search of higher office in the upcoming election cycle.
Several of the Democrats on that list have already done just that, as was detailed in a recent piece from The Washington Post about how difficult it will be for Democrats to hang onto their slim majority in the House.
Other Democrats who recently called it quits in the House include Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-IL), who oversaw the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s (DCCC) disastrous performance in 2020, as well as Rep. Charlie Crist (D-FL), who plans to challenge Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).
Still others include Reps. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ) and Filemon Vela (D-TX), as well as Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), who will run for an open Senate seat. Expected to join them is Rep. Conor Lamb (D-PA), who is also predicted to make a run for an open Senate seat.
Meanwhile, Breitbart noted that Murphy’s chances of taking out Rubio appear slim as she already has some problems of her own to deal with, such as the possibility that her own district could disappear or be substantially altered by redistricting, as well as increasing scrutiny over corporate campaign donations and family business links to communist China.