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ST. LOUIS – Senator Roy Blunt made a surprise announcement Monday. Missouri’s senior Republican senator announced his political career will come to an end when his term concludes. Blunt will not seek reelection in 2022.

The news opens the doors for a host of potential candidates. Several Republicans took to social media sharing statements about the possibilities of running for the US Senate.

Representatives Ann Wagner and Jason Smith each posted their own messages. State officials indicating possible campaigns included Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe, Attorney General Eric Schmitt, and Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft.

Former Missouri Governor Eric Greitens has already indicated running against Blunt was possible. William Hall, a former senate staffer and adjust professor for Webster, Washington, and Maryville universities, believes Blunt stepping aside in 2022 could hurt Greitens’ chances.

“It really takes away what I believe might have been one of the focal points of a Greitens race – to run against an establishment candidate,” Hall said.

Democratic State Senator Scott Sifton previously announced he intended to challenge Blunt.

Following Blunt’s announcement, several other Democrats indicated they could run. Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas and State Senator Brian Williams shared messages indicating they will examine how they can best serve the state.

Blunt was asked if he had any advice for his replacement. He said lawmakers should not waste time on issues lacking support.

“Too many politicians have rushed to create this huge list of what they’ll never do, which means when they get there, they never get anything done,” he said.