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Sen. Leahy announces he won't seek reelection next fall

A photo of Sen. Patrick Leahy in front of a podium.
Peter Hirschfeld
Sen. Patrick Leahy announced Monday he won't seek reelection next fall. He's the longest-serving Senate Democrat.

Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy has announced he won't seek reelection next fall. He's the longest-serving Senate Democrat, first elected in 1974.

"It's time to put down the gavel," Leahy said. "It's time to pass the torch to the next Vermonter, who will carry on this great work for this great state. It's time to come home.“

Leahy, 81, shared the news at a press event Monday morning at the Vermont Statehouse in Montpelier. He planned to return to Washington afterwards.

Leahy is chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee and senior-most member of both the judiciary and agriculture committees.

He recounted his accomplishments from serving in those capacities, including establishing a national organic standards and labeling program and the first update to the Violence Against Women Act.

"I'm uniquely blessed to have served with fellow Vermonters," Leahy said, whose " common sense and goodness," he added, he strives to match.

This story will be updated.

Elodie has worked as a reporter at the Concord Monitor and the St. Albans Messenger. For the last couple of years she's been working as a freelance journalist as she pursued her MFA in nonfiction writing. She comes back to Vermont from Williamstown, MA.
Originally from Delaware, he moved to Alaska in 2010 for his first job in radio. He spent five years working as a radio and television reporter, as well as a radio producer, talk show host, and news director at stations across Alaska, where his reporting received awards from the Alaska Press Club and the Alaska Broadcasters Association. Relocating to southwest Florida, he spent several months producing television news before joining WGCU as the Gulf Coast Live producer in August 2016.
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