(CNN) – Former GOP Rep. Mike Rogers is running for Senate in Michigan, he announced Wednesday, giving Republicans a prominent recruit in an open seat Democrats are trying to defend next year.
“I thought I put politics behind me. But like you, I know something’s broken,” the former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee says in an announcement video that largely targets President Joe Biden. “No candidate is better prepared to have an impact on day one,” adds Rogers, who left Congress in 2015 after serving 14 years in the House.
While many national Democrats have their eyes on Rep. Elissa Slotkin to succeed retiring Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow, Republicans had until now been without a top tier candidate in this contest. Rogers’ candidacy is a win for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, which had been courting him to enter the race, CNN previously reported.
“Mike is the type of candidate who can perform well with suburban Michiganders and be a strong part of the eventual ticket in Michigan. I am pleased to see Mike stepping up to run for the U.S. Senate,” NRSC chair Steve Daines said in a statement.
Republicans need to pick up one or two seats to flip the Senate, depending on who wins the presidency in 2024.
But Rogers won’t necessarily have the GOP race to himself. Former Rep. Peter Meijer, who lost a primary last year over his vote to impeach former President Donald Trump, has formed an exploratory committee for Senate.
Slotkin, a strong fundraiser, also faces a primary that includes actor Hill Harper.
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