Patrick Leahy, Vermont Senator Since 1975, Announces Retirement

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Vermont Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy announced his retirement Monday morning in his home state.

Leahy, 81, was first elected in 1975 and is in his eighth term. He is the president pro tempore of the Senate, making him third in the line of presidential succession after Vice President Kamala Harris and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and is the chamber’s longest-serving member.

Speaking from the Vermont statehouse, Leahy said that “it is time to pass the torch to the next Vermonter who will carry on this work for our great state.”

“I know I have been there for my state when I was needed most,” Leahy said. “I know I have taken our best ideas and helped them grow. I brought Vermont’s voice to the United States Senate and Vermont values across the world.”

Leahy was lauded by several of his Republican colleagues after his announcement, including Republican Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, who recently announced that he was running for another term at age 89.

No Republicans have announced bids for Leahy’s seat, though several reports have floated that Democratic Rep. Peter Welch, Vermont’s lone House member, will launch a campaign. Some have also speculated that Republican Vermont Gov. Phil Scott may run.

This story is breaking and will be updated.

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