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Nevada Sen. Jackie Rosen is seeking re-election in a tough year for Democrats

Sen. Jackie RosenA Democrat from Nevada who steered a moderate path during his first term in the chamber announced Wednesday that he would seek re-election in the perennial battleground state.

In a statement, Rosen focused her efforts on promoting bipartisanship and “big issues to solve” for the country, including “lowering costs for the middle class, protecting abortion rights, tackling the climate crisis (and) protecting Social Security and Medicare.”

Rosen’s announcement is welcome news for Democrats ahead of a challenging 2024 Senate map. They must protect incumbents not only in red states — Montana, Ohio and West Virginia — but also in multiple swing states.

No Republican challenger has yet announced plans to take on Rosen. He ended 2022 with $4.4 million in cash on hand in his campaign account, according to Federal Election Commission reports.

Election 2024 Nevada Senate Rosen

U.S. Sen. Jackie Rosen, D-Nev., listens Tuesday, March 14, 2023, during a Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Strategic Forces hearing to examine U.S. space force programs in review of the fiscal year 2024 defense authorization request.

Alex Brandon/AP

The November 2024 election will come two years after Rosen’s colleague from Nevada, Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, won re-election against Republican Adam Laxalt, though the GOP managed to flip the governor’s mansion in the state.

Rosen, 65, was a first-term congresswoman from a Las Vegas-area district when she defeated GOP incumbent Sen. Dean Heller in 2018. Before that, he was president of a prominent Jewish synagogue in the Las Vegas suburb of Henderson.

In Nevada, Democrats hold a statewide registration edge over Republicans, 32.2% to 29.7%, though both trail the 38% who are affiliated with neither party. Rural voters lean heavily Republican, but elections often go Democratic with ballots cast in the state’s two largest population centers, Las Vegas and Reno.

“Nevada is always a battleground, and this Senate race will be one of the toughest in the country,” Rosen said in an online video prepared for his announcement. “What happens in Nevada in 2024 could decide control of the Senate again.”

Rosen’s work on Senate committees reflects his state roots, including his role as chairman of the Tourism, Trade and Export Promotion Subcommittee. Other panel assignments include aging, armed services, health and education, small business, and national security and government affairs.

Rosen often works together with Cortez Masto, the first Latina from Nevada to be elected to the US Senate.

In recent months, Rosen and Cortez Masto have urged the Federal Communications Commission to revise Nevada’s broadband map to correct errors in its depiction of Internet availability that result in less funding for areas without adequate upload and download speeds.

Last week, Rosen joined Republican Congressman John Thune of South Dakota to introduce a bill aimed at forcing the FCC to wait for updated maps before appropriating funds.

On Monday, Rosen spoke to the state Legislature in Carson City, praising the female-majority Assembly and Senate and touting federal bipartisan legislation on investments in STEM education, health and tourism, and rural communities.

“And a lot of our work, my work, was bipartisan,” he said.

A report last May by the Luger Center and Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy ranked Rosen among the most bipartisan members of the Senate. He ranks ninth out of 98 senators, behind Republican John Cornyn of Texas and Democrat Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota. Cortez Masto placed 34th.

Since Rosen moved to Washington, the political race in Nevada has drawn increasingly intense national interest. Mail-in voting was expanded to every active voter by the Democratic-led state legislature. But the tallying of both the primary and general election results was delayed by several days to allow postmarked ballots to be received at election offices.

The Cortez Masto wins 2022, who was considered the most vulnerable Democratic senator up for re-election, helped the party control the Senate for the next two years of Joe Biden’s presidency. He defeated Laxalt by less than 8,000 votes out of nearly 1 million ballots cast.


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