[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/15/art.gillibrand.gi.jpg caption="Gillibrand has won the backing of Harry Reid."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Calling her a "rising star in the Democratic caucus," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced Friday that he's backing Kirsten Gillibrand's bid to retain her Senate seat in 2010.
“I am endorsing Senator Gillibrand’s campaign because she is a rising star in our caucus,” Reid said in a statement. “As a working mother with two young children, Kirsten brings unique perspective to the challenging issues we are debating in Congress. In just six month, Kirsten has introduced a number of new and innovative legislative approaches to the problems many families face.”
Reid picked Gillibrand over Rep. Carolyn Maloney, a New York lawmaker who plans to challenge the sitting senator in next year's Democratic primary. Gillibrand, a former congresswoman, was appointed to the Senate in January to succeed Hillary Clinton.