California Sen. Dianne Feinstein delays announcement about 2018 due to “family health issues”

According to the Los Angeles Times, California Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein said Thursday she is “waiting for some family health issues to be resolved before she announces whether she’ll run for another term in 2018.”

She did not provide details although she did not attend the Democratic National Convention last summer after her husband, Richard Blum, was diagnosed with lung cancer.

The Times story also notes that Feinstein “was fitted with a pacemaker in January, raising additional questions about whether she plans to run.”

The senator is 83 years old, and the oldest member of the U.S. Senate, having served there for 24 years. She has been raising money, which has led some to assume she is running and had previously made the kinds of statements one makes when intending to run. But the situation is clearly evolving.

If she does not run, there will be no lack of talented California Democrats to take their shot. As one Democratic strategist put it:

“You’ve got these septuagenarian and octogenarian Democrats who have been holding these seats for some period of time, and there have been a couple generations of young, eager Democrats who have come and gone and didn’t have an opportunity to run for these seats, so 2018 is kind of crunch time.”

As much as it frustrates the younger crowd, her years of service should entitle her to make a decision on her own terms. We should know her intentions soon.

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