Durbin signals he will run for reelection

Senate Democratic Whip Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinOn The Money: Pessimism grows as coronavirus talks go down to the wire | Jobs report poised to light fire under COVID-19 talks | Tax preparers warn unemployment recipients could owe IRS Pessimism grows as coronavirus talks go down to the wire Senate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic 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 SchumerChuck SchumerPostal Service says it lost .2 billion over three-month period A three-trillion dollar stimulus, but Charles Schumer for renewable energy — leading businesses want to change that Democrats try to force Trump to boost medical supplies production MORE (N.Y.) were long seen as rivals to succeed former Senate Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidMcConnell goes hands-off on coronavirus relief bill Kamala Harris to young Black women at conference: 'I want you to be ambitious' Obama calls filibuster 'Jim Crow relic,' backs new Voting Rights Act bill 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 StabenowACLU calls on Congress to approve COVID-19 testing for immigrants Senators press IRS chief on stimulus check pitfalls Democrats warn Biden against releasing SCOTUS list 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 TrumpJoe Arpaio loses bid for his old position as sheriff Trump brushes off view that Russia denigrating Biden: 'Nobody's been tougher on Russia than I have' Trump tees up executive orders on economy but won't sign yet 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.