Sen. John McCain does not want to leave the Senate any time soon.
The 78-year old lawmaker tells NBC News in an interview released Monday night that he will run for reelection in 2016.
”I have decided to run for re-election,” McCain said. “I’m ready. I am more than ready. In some ways, I am eager.”
While McCain, a Vietnam veteran, will be 80 years old in 2016, he told NBC News he “is just getting started.”
”I say watch me,” he said. “Take a look. Take a look at my 18-hour days. Take a look at the hearings we have. Take a look at my legislative accomplishments.”
“I am happy to tell you my mother is 103 years old and she is doing well,” he added.
If McCain, a former presidential candidate and currently the chairman of the powerful Senate Armed Services Committee, wins reelection it would be his sixth term.
“I have never been more concerned about the security of this nation because of the feckless leadership of the president of the United States,” he said.
McCain has been a thorn in the side of the White House as a critic of the administration’s foreign policy, and conservatives, who view him as too moderate especially on the issue of immigration reform and amnesty.
Last year the Republican Party in Arizona passed a resolution censuring the Republican lawmaker for having too liberal a record.
When asked about the censure, McCain pointed to another detractor.
“I was also censured by Vladimir Putin,” he said.
While there have been no other announced candidates for the seat to date, some possible challengers include Rep. Matt Salmon and State Sen. Kelli Ward. Conservative groups have also expressed interest in supporting a McCain challenger from the right.
NBC News reports that McCain does expect a challenge.
“I have to convince the voters all over again of Arizona,” he said. “But I will stand on my record but more so, I will stand on what I can do for Arizona and the nation.”