Murray backs Schumer for leader
© Greg Nash

Sen. Patty MurrayPatricia (Patty) Lynn MurrayPlaintiff and defendant from Obergefell v. Hodges unite to oppose Barrett's confirmation Overnight Health Care: Trump takes criticism of Fauci to a new level | GOP Health Committee chairman defends Fauci | Birx confronted Pence about Atlas Government watchdog to investigate allegations of Trump interference at CDC, FDA MORE (Wash.) is backing Sen. Charles SchumerChuck SchumerHouse Democrats introduce bill to invest 0 billion in STEM research and education Graham dismisses criticism from Fox Business's Lou Dobbs Lewandowski: Trump 'wants to see every Republican reelected regardless of ... if they break with the president' MORE (N.Y.) to lead Senate Democrats after the 2016 elections, removing the last obstacle in his path to the prized position.

Murray, who was considered a potential rival to succeed Minority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Justice Barrett joins court; one week until Election Day GOP Senate confirms Trump Supreme Court pick to succeed Ginsburg Democratic Senate emerges as possible hurdle for progressives  MORE (Nev.), has spoken with Schumer "several times" and told the New York Democrat that she plans to support him. 

ADVERTISEMENT

"Senator Murray spoke to Senator Schumer several times over the past few days and told him that she planned to support him for leader next Congress and looks forward to continuing to be his partner in Senate Democratic leadership," a Murray aide said. 

Murray's endorsement was first reported by Roll Call

She is currently the No. 4 Democrat, serving as the conference secretary. She was also chairwoman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee during the 2012 election cycle, when Senate Democrats beat expectations by picking up two seats. 

A person close to Schumer told The Hill last week that the New York Democrat believes he will have enough support to succeed Reid, who is retiring at the end of his current term. 

Several Senate Democrats, including Minority Whip Sen. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinDemocrats warn GOP will regret Barrett confirmation Democrats brace for nail-biting finish to Senate battle Democratic Senate emerges as possible hurdle for progressives  MORE (Ill.), have publicly backed Schumer, who is currently the No. 3 Senate Democrat.

Reid announced his retirement Friday, setting off speculation on who would be next to lead Senate Democrats. Speaking on KNPR Nevada public radio, the Nevada senator predicted that Schumer would be elected to succeed him.

"Chuck SchumerChuck SchumerHouse Democrats introduce bill to invest 0 billion in STEM research and education Graham dismisses criticism from Fox Business's Lou Dobbs Lewandowski: Trump 'wants to see every Republican reelected regardless of ... if they break with the president' MORE, everybody knows, has been my lieutenant for a lot of years," he said. "He will be elected to replace me in 22 months. I think one reason that will happen is because I want him to be my replacement."

Schumer, if successful, would become the first Jewish majority leader in the Senate if Democrats regain control during the 2016 elections.