Wagner opts not to challenge McCaskill
In a surprising move, Congresswoman Ann Wagner has opted against challenging U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill in 2018. Missouri is set to be one of the premiere Senate matchups with McCaskill, a Democrat, representing an ever-more red state.
In a story which first broke in the Washington Examiner, Wagner commented, “Those who know me well know I put my family and my community first. While I am grateful for the incredible support and encouragement I have received from across Missouri to run for United States Senate, I am announcing today my intention to run for re-election to the United States House of Representatives in 2018.”
She was set to post a very large fundraising number in part based on the talk of her Senate run, and donors who typically don’t get involved in primaries taking the opportunity before a widely discussed August campaign launch to contribute to her while still running for the House.
Wagner was widely seen as the top Republican contender for the seat. However, in recent weeks, older Republicans led by businessman Sam Fox were promoting the candidacy of Attorney General Josh Hawley.
With Wagner out of the race, speculation will turn to State Treasurer Eric Schmitt, Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer, Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft, businessman David Wassinger, and State Senator Mike Kehoe as potential candidates.
McCaskill has already been running hard and is currently in the process of holding ten town halls this week and, as of April 1, had $3,054,997 on hand for her re-election bid.