A class act by a classy Democrat
Debbie Dingell, whose name has been mentioned in nearly every conversation about who will replace Carl Levin when he leaves his Senate seat in 2014, has announced that she is NOT running. When I spoke with her last week, she made it clear to me then that she had not made a decision at that point. She and her husband Congressman John Dingell are VERY close as those of us in Washtenaw County have the privilege of observing on a regular basis, and a Senate run would have separated them, a prospect that clearly gave Dingell pause.
Today, she has announced that a decision has been made. From a post on the Michigan Democratic Party Facebook page:
I hadn’t planned to spend much time this year thinking about running for the Senate. I’d planned to spend my time working hard to reelect Carl Levin, as well as good Democrats up and down the ticket, including, needless to say, John Dingell.
When Carl Levin announced he would not seek reelection, those plans changed. Close friends, complete strangers, political allies and business colleagues encouraged me to take a long, hard look at running for the Senate myself – and that’s what I have done.
I love my state, and the people who make up the fabric of our communities. I’ve lived here my whole life, my roots are here; I am a Michigan girl born and bred…and I can tell you this: we can work through these tough times to a much better future. We don’t back down, we don’t quit, and we don’t give up, no matter how many times we get knocked down. Standing up for our communities and for our families is how I define the job of representing Michigan in Washington, and it’s a job I know I would be honored to have. It’s also no secret that I think we need more women in the Senate and in the House, and there was an attraction to potentially being the junior member of an All-Debbie Senate delegation.
But I think it is critical that Democrats unite behind one candidate for what will be a difficult and expensive race, and it’s one of the reasons I have concluded that now is not the time for me to run for the United States Senate. We have good candidates like Gary Peters considering running, and a primary would be divisive at a time that cries out for unity. As someone who has spent much of my career working to bring people together, it just didn’t feel right to take this step now. There may be a time when elective office is the right choice for me, but this was not it.
I want to thank everyone for the encouragement, for the support, and for the friendship that I’ve experienced during this brief, but intense time. I look forward to working with all of you, side by side, to elect Democrats in 2014.
It’s no secret that I have great admiration for Debbie Dingell. This classy move just takes my admiration to an even higher level. Michigan is fortunate to have fighters like her on our side and I know for certain that she’ll be a major player in the future of our state and our Party for years to come.
This clearly puts Gary Peters in the driver’s seat for the Senate candidacy. He, too, is someone I admire greatly and I look forward to seeing him emerge victorious. He’ll represent our state well.