Virginia Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine to run for re-election in 2024

Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia announced Friday he will be running for a third term in office in 2024.

Kaine made the announcement Friday morning from the state capital, Richmond, after meeting with local business leaders and participating in a discussion on economic development.

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Sen. Tim Kaine D-Va., speaks during a news conference outside of the Senate chamber, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

“I’m a servant. I love Virginia. I’m proud of what I’ve done,” Kaine said in the announcement.

Kaine’s decision is a major relief for Democrats who have been pushing for him to run and avoid the uncertainty of a newcomer in the 2024 election.

The Republicans reacted to Kaine’s announcement by saying they will focus on recruiting the right candidate.

“Virginians have shown they’re willing to vote Republican with the right candidate and the right political environment,” National Republican Senatorial Committee spokeswoman Maggie Abboud told Fox News Digital. “We’re going to keep a close eye on Virginia and focus on recruiting a strong candidate who can raise the resources necessary to compete.”

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While Democrats performed better than expected in the 2022 midterm elections, the 2024 election cycle – where Democrats will be defending seats in several battleground states – could have a far different outcome.

Democrats will be defending 23 of the 34 Senate seats up for grabs next cycle. Of their 23 seats up for election, seven are in states won by former President Trump in either 2016 or 2020.

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Sen. Tim Kaine, a Democrat from Virginia, speaks during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing in Washington, D.C., April 27, 2021.
(Susan Walsh/AP Photo/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Republicans, however, will not be defending any seat in a state won by President Biden, unlike the 2022 midterms where the most competitive races were in states Biden won: Nevada, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Arizona.

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.