Congressman Kevin Cramer Announces He’s Not Running for Senate

U.S. Rep. Kevin Cramer speaks at a policy summit hosted by the Americans for Prosperity-North Dakota on Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2017, at the Avalon Events Center in Fargo. David Samson / The Forum

I heard early this morning that Congressman Kevin Cramer would be announcing his decision to run for re-election in the U.S. House, rather than challenge Democratic Senate incumbent Heidi Heitkamp, and indeed that’s just what he announced this morning on KFYR radio.

“After the visit with the President last week it was pretty clear to me within hours after that…we now had all the information we needed,” he told radio host Scott Hennen.

“We’ve decided that the best thing for our family and me and really for North Dakota…is to seek re-election to the House of Representatives.”

Cramer had met with President Donald Trump last week and was urged to run for the Senate. Certainly, from reports I was getting at the time, it seemed as though Cramer would challenge Heitkamp.

“I’m not the only person who can win the Senate seat,” Cramer said.

“I want Republicans to understand that,” he added. “This is a seat we can win in this election cycle.”

Cramer has been moving up the ranks in the House. Shortly before the holidays news broke that Cramer would be getting a promotion on the House Energy and Commerce Committee due to some retirements. At the time he said that situation was making any decision about a Senate race more difficult.

UPDATE: Tom Campbell, a Republican state Senator from Grafton who has been in the Senate race since last year, sent out this statement in response to Cramer’s announcement:

Rob Port is the editor of, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and the host of the Rob (Re)Port on Fargo-based WDAY AM970 from noon-2pm weekdays.


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