Rep. Nancy Peolsi on Thursday endorsed Rep. Adam Schiff in California’s high-profile Senate primary, backing the former House Intelligence Committee chair but only on the condition that Sen. Dianne Feinstein opts not to run again.
“If Senator Feinstein decides to seek re-election, she has my whole-hearted support. If she decides not to run, I will be supporting House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff, who knows well the nexus between a strong Democracy and a strong economy,” Pelosi (D-Calif.), a two-time speaker of the House who stepped down from leadership earlier this year, said in an email. “In his service in the House, he has focused on strengthening our Democracy with justice and on building an economy that works for all.”
A spokesperson for Feinstein did not immediately return an email seeking comment on Pelosi’s announcement.
Though Feinstein, who is 89 years old and the longest-serving Democrat in the Senate, has yet to announce whether she’ll retire or seek another six-year term in office, potential successors have already jumped into the primary race to replace her.
Pelosi’s conditional endorsement comes one week after Schiff (D-Calif.) officially launched his campaign. Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) was the first to jump into the race, and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) has privately told her colleagues that she intends to run. Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) has also expressed interest, saying that will consider a bid “over the next few months.”