Feb. 9 (UPI) -- Former Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said Friday he will run for the U.S. Senate this year.
"I am running for the United States Senate -- not to serve one party -- but to stand up to both parties, fight for Maryland, and fix our nation's broken politics," Hogan said in a statement on X.
Hogan is considered a moderate and was a popular governor.
Maryland Democratic Sen. Ben Cardin is retiring. So Hogan will run for an open seat with two Democrats, Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks and Rep. David Trone, competing in a primary in May.
Hogan's decision came after National Republican Senatorial Committee Chair Steve Daines reportedly strongly urged him to run in order to try to improve Republican chances for re-gaining a Senate majority.
Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee spokesperson Maeve Coyle said in a statement, "A vote for Republican Larry Hogan is a vote to make Mitch McConnell Majority Leader and turn the Senate over to Republicans so they can pass a national abortion ban. Democrats have won every statewide federal election in Maryland for 44 years and 2024 will be no different."
Hogan's run could improve Republican prospects in the Senate, but Joe Biden won Maryland by 33 points in 2020 and, with the state leaning strongly toward Democrats, Hogan will have a difficult task to win.
In March 2023, a federal arrest warrant was issued for former Hogan Chief of Staff Roy McGrath when he failed to show up for his corruption trial in Baltimore.
The charges stemmed from McGrath's time at the state-owned Maryland Environmental Service prior to becoming Hogan's Chief of Staff. On April 3, 2023, McGrath died in a confrontation with the FBI.