Vermont Rep. Peter Welch Running to Replace Retiring Sen. Patrick Leahy

Democratic Rep. Peter Welch, Vermont's at-large U.S. House representative since 2007, is seeking a promotion. On Monday, he announced his campaign for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by the retiring Sen. Patrick Leahy (D).

Welch was elected in 2006, after then Rep. Bernie Sanders (I) retired to run for the Senate seat he now holds. In a bit of historical alignment, Sanders served eight terms in the House and replaced a retiring Senator, Jim Jeffords (R). Welch is now completing his 8th term, and starts out as a strong favorite to replace the retiring Leahy.

Sanders endorsed Welch shortly after he officially entered the race. 

Vermont is the only state that has never sent a woman to Congress. Several have publicly expressed interest in the House seat, pending Welch's decision.

Welch is the 27th current House member to announce they will be leaving at the end of this term.

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