Blunt becomes the fifth Republican senator to decide against running for reelection in 2022, as the GOP tries to win back the Senate majority it just lost in the 2020 election cycle.
Sens. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, Rob Portman of Ohio and Richard Shelby of Alabama have also announced in the past couple of months that they would not launch reelection campaigns. Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina said during his 2016 reelection that he wouldn’t run again in 2022. Another old bull of the Senate – 87-year-old Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa – is mulling retirement.
Mike Biundo, a longtime Republican consultant and veteran of the 2016 Trump presidential campaign, told Fox News that the retirements “certainly do” allow the former president to potentially increase his clout over the GOP.