US Rep. Spartz won’t seek Indiana Senate seat — or new term

Rep. Victoria Spartz, R-Ind., listens to proposed amendments as the House Judiciary Committee...
Rep. Victoria Spartz, R-Ind., listens to proposed amendments as the House Judiciary Committee holds its first meeting under the Republican majority, Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023, at the Capitol in Washington.(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)
Published: Feb. 3, 2023 at 2:35 PM EST
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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Republican U.S. Rep. Victoria Spartz said Friday she would not seek reelection to her Indiana seat next year or jump into the Republican primary for the state’s open U.S. Senate seat.

Spartz’s decision further solidifies the chances of U.S. Rep. Jim Banks for the Senate seat from the Republican-dominated state, after former Gov. Mitch Daniels declined earlier in the week to become a candidate.

RELATED: Banks talks to 21Alive as he launches Senate bid

The Senate scramble started with current GOP Sen. Mike Braun’s move to make a 2024 run for governor, but Banks has consolidated support from former President Donald Trump and the Senate Republican national campaign organization. Banks has become a combative defender of Trump since first being elected to Congress from a heavily Republican district in northeastern Indiana in 2016.

Spartz, 44, said in her statement Friday that “being a working mom is tough and I need to spend more time with my two high school girls back home, so I will not run for any office in 2024.”

The Ukrainian-born Spartz, who won her second term from a central Indiana district last fall, has been critical at times of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s government since the Russian invasion began last February, primarily regarding alleged high-level corruption.

Spartz faced a tight and expensive campaign to first win the seat in 2020, but a Republican redrawing of congressional districts shifted the Democratic-leaning north side of Indianapolis out of the district and gave it more GOP-friendly rural areas north and northeast of the city. She received 61% of the vote last fall in defeating an under-funded Democratic candidate.