Durbin signals he will run for reelection

Senate Democratic Whip Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinKids confront Feinstein over Green New Deal Senate plots to avoid fall shutdown brawl Overnight Energy: Trump ends talks with California on car emissions | Dems face tough vote on Green New Deal | Climate PAC backing Inslee in possible 2020 run MORE (Ill.) on Sunday signaled he will likely run for reelection, saying he is raising money and trying to lose weight ahead of a possible 2020 race for a fifth term.

“I can tell people that I’m raising money and trying to lose some weight, that’s usually the first indication that you’re up for reelection,” Durbin said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” when asked about running for another term.

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Speculation has swirled around Durbin’s possible retirement since Election Day.

He and Senate Democratic Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerDon’t look for House GOP to defy Trump on border wall GOP Green New Deal stunt is a great deal for Democrats National emergency declaration — a legal fight Trump is likely to win MORE (N.Y.) were long seen as rivals to succeed former Senate Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidHarry Reid says he won’t make 2020 endorsement until after Nevada caucus Sanders hires veteran progressive operative to manage 2020 bid Constitutional conservatives need to oppose the national emergency MORE (Nev.).

Schumer leapfrogged Durbin to become the Democratic leader and it was speculated that he might want to replace the Illinois lawmaker with a longtime ally, such as Sen. Debbie StabenowDeborah (Debbie) Ann StabenowLand conservation tax incentives should inspire charitable giving, not loopholes Four names emerge for UN position: report Democrats brush off GOP 'trolling' over Green New Deal MORE (D-Mich.), a former chairwoman of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee.

Durbin, however, has doggedly worked to push the Democratic message on the Senate floor and in media appearances. He also has emerged as an influential negotiator on issues under the jurisdiction of the Judiciary Committee such as immigration reform.

The No. 2-ranking Democrat in the Senate recently scored a major victory by spearheading the passage of criminal justice reform. President TrumpDonald John TrumpAverage tax refunds down double-digits, IRS data shows White House warns Maduro as Venezuela orders partial closure of border with Colombia Trump administration directs 1,000 more troops to Mexican border MORE signed the legislation into law Friday, one of the biggest bipartisan accomplishments of the 115th Congress.

He reported $1.68 billion in cash on hand in his campaign account at the end of September.