U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree announced Tuesday that she will not make a bid for the governor’s office in 2018.

Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven Island, said in a Facebook post she “really appreciated the people who suggested to me this would be a good year to run for governor.”

She had said early this month that she was considering a bid, but ruled it out Tuesday in a video posted on Facebook, saying she wanted to “continue to fight” for Maine in Washington. Pingree called the administration of President Trump “crazy” and listed it among the challenges the nation is facing.

A bid for the governor’s office would have put Pingree, who represents the 1st Congressional District, in an already crowded field of 10 Democrats, among 22 candidates in all. Five Republicans, four independents, two Green Party members and one Libertarian have announced they will run.

Sen. Susan Collins, a Republican, also considered a run for governor. But unlike Pingree, who quickly decided not to run, Collins took months before announcing in October she would remain in the Senate.

“I want to continue to fight, whether it’s on global warming or the cost of health care, trying to restore the middle class and fight back against this tax cut, which is going to decimate the working class,” Pingree said. “If I get the chance, I’m going to run again for office and I hope I get the chance to stay in the 1st Congressional District.”

Pingree was elected to Congress in 2008 and is serving her fifth consecutive term. She was national president and CEO of Common Cause, a nonprofit citizen activist organization, from 2003 to 2007. Pingree also served four terms in the Maine Senate, to which she was elected in 1992.

Scott Thistle can be contacted at:

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