U.S. Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) citing health concerns announced on Monday afternoon that he intended to resign from the U.S. Senate effective April 1st.

He released the following statement:

I regret my health has become an ongoing challenge.  I intend to fulfill my responsibilities and commitments to the people of Mississippi and the Senate through the completion of the 2018 appropriations cycle, after which I will formally retire from the U.S. Senate.

It has been a great honor to serve the people of Mississippi and our country.  I’ve done my best to make decisions in the best interests of our nation, and my beloved state.  My top concern has always been my constituents in Mississippi.  My hope is by making this announcement now, a smooth transition can be ensured so their voice will continue to be heard in Washington, D.C.  My efforts, and those of my staff, to assist them will continue and transfer to my successor.

Mississippi law states that Governor Phil Bryant can appoint a replacement for Cochran until a special election can be held in November.

The 80-year-old U.S. Senator was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1978 after serving in the U.S. House of Representatives for three terms. He is the 10th longest serving U.S. Senator in history.

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