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Gary Peters at a hearing on Capitol Hill, in Washington
Gary Peters at a hearing on Capitol Hill, in Washington, on March 25, 2021.Anna Moneymaker / The New York Times via AP Pool

Michigan Sen. Peters won't run Democrats' Senate campaign arm again next cycle

Peters demurred when asked how Democrats should handle Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema's decision to leave the party.

By and

Michigan Sen. Gary Peters, who helmed the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee this past cycle as Democrats expanded their majority, had a simple answer Monday night when asked if he would stay on for another term at the organization: "No."

While Peters had previously not ruled out another two years as the DSCC chairman, he was definitive Monday, confirming his decision first to NBC News. Asked about that change, Peters said he wanted to get through last week's Georgia Senate runoff (which Democrats won) before ruling it out.

"Last week, we were still in the midst of it all, I didn't want to confuse anybody. I was totally focused on that," Peters said.

Despite worries from within the party that Democrats could lose their 50-50 majority in the Senate this fall (Democrats had the edge thanks to Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote), Democrats expanded their majority by one seat after the election with Peters at the helm.  

Democrats haven't tapped a successor to Peters to lead the DSCC for the 2024 cycle, where Democrats will largely be on defense in key states. One question that will loom large for the party's next chair will be how to handle Arizona, where Sen. Kyrsten Sinema left the Democratic Party and registered as an independent. (The decision isn’t expected to jeopardize the Democratic Party’s 51-49 majority organizationally, and Democrats will still hold the edge on committees despite her decision.) 

Asked about whether the party should endorse Sinema or support a candidate running as a Democrat, Peters demurred.

"I’m really happy to say: That’s the job of the next the DSCC chair, who will have to make that determination.

"I wouldn't want to speculate because I want to wait and see who's going to take over this position, I'm sure they'll think about what they're going to do and I don't want to get ahead of them right now."