(Alex Wong/Getty Images)
By Holly Ramer, Associated Press
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — New Hampshire's senior U.S. senator, Democrat Jeanne Shaheen, has confirmed she is running for a third term.
In an interview broadcast on Sunday, Shaheen told WMUR-TV her immediate priority will be making sure a government shutdown doesn't happen again. She also said she'll focus on jobs, health care, access to affordable prescription drugs and ending the opioid crisis.
"Every community in New Hampshire has been hit by the opioid epidemic, and we've got to make sure we address that, that we help families and communities become whole again," she said.
Shaheen disagreed when asked whether her campaign would become a referendum on the Trump administration.
"I think what the Senate race should be about is what we need to do in New Hampshire and this country to address our future. I think it's going to be about what I'm hearing from people in this state about what they want to see," she said. "They want to see that their kids can get a good education, that they can go through college or whatever higher education they're doing and not come out with debts that are going to keep them from buying a house or getting married or doing all the things we want young people to do. That we continue to provide access to health care, which continues to be a huge issue for people."
Shaheen, a former state senator who turns 72 on Monday, was the first woman elected governor of New Hampshire and served three terms starting in 1997. She lost her first run for the U.S. Senate in 2002 to Republican John E. Sununu, but defeated him in 2008 to win her first term in Washington. The first woman in the country to serve as both governor and U.S. senator, Shaheen defeated former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown in 2014.
So far, no prominent Republicans have publicly expressed interest in challenging her in 2020.
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