Delaware Sen. Tom Carper announced Monday he will not run for reelection in 2024, giving Democrats their fourth open seat of the cycle. But like the others in California and Maryland, this contest should easily stay in Democratic hands — and perhaps finally give way for a Black woman to join the Senate once again.

With the 76-year-old's exit, our rating remains Solid Democrat. At-Large Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, who has publicly expressed interest in running for the seat, is set to enter with Carper's support. In his retirement speech, Carper said he spoke to Blunt Rochester Monday morning and told her, "You've been patient in waiting for me to get out of the way. I hope that you run."

Carper has held statewide elected office in Delaware for nearly 50 years, and is one of the state's longest-serving, most influential politicians – second only, of course, to President Joe Biden. He was elected state Treasurer in 1976, then six years later, he was elected to Congress as the state's sole representative. He served in that position for a

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