After much anticipation, California Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff on Thursday formally announced his bid to replace incumbent Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) in the 2024 election.
Schiff now joins progressive Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) in a quest to unseat the 89-year-old Feinstein, who has yet to disclose her plans for re-election. His announcement also arrives after House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) on Tuesday blocked Schiff from his spot on the House Intelligence Committee so as to return the panel to "one of genuine honesty and credibility that regains the trust of the American people."
"The fight for our democracy and working families is part of the same struggle," Schiff said in a statement. "Because if our democracy isn't delivering for Americans, they'll look for alternatives, like a dangerous demagogue who promises that he alone can fix it."
As Politico notes, California's "top-two primary system" and Democratic lean could mean two Democrats advance to the general election. And Schiff, for his part, certainly has the war chest to back up his bid.
While Feinstein has yet to confirm her plans, most believe she will retire, especially after colleagues and former staffers last spring called into question her mental fitness for office. Per The New York Times, she also has yet to hire a campaign staff and reported less than $10,000 in cash on hand in the latest campaign finance report — "a paltry sum for a sitting senator."
On Thursday, Schiff told Los Angeles' Fox 11 that he discussed his plans with Feinstein before going public. "I wouldn't be doing this without her blessing," he said. "I want to make sure everything I do is respectful to her."
In Congress, Schiff is perhaps most well-known for his work on the Jan. 6 committee and his leadership during former President Donald Trump's first impeachment trial.