Republican Sen. Thad Cochran announced Monday he will resign from his post on April 1, amid health challenges, after serving 40 years in the U.S. Senate.
Cochran, R-Miss., who sits as the chairman of the influential Senate Appropriations Committee, said he would “formally retire” following the completion of the 2018 appropriations cycle.
“I regret my health has become an ongoing challenge,” Cochran said in a statement. “I intent 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.”
Cochran was first elected to the Senate in 1978, becoming the first Republican in more than 100 years to win a statewide election in Mississippi. He is the tenth-longest serving senator in U.S. history. Prior to joining the Senate, Cochran served three terms in the House of Representatives.
Cochran spent weeks recuperating from a “urological issue” in Mississippi in September of last year.
Fox News, at the time, learned Cochran was being treated for prostate issues, but a source underscored that his condition was not serious or cancerous.
Mississippi’s republican Governor Phil Bryant will select a replacement.