Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers won’t seek reelection

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, chairwoman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, won’t run in November to keep her seat, she announced Thursday.

“It’s been the honor and privilege of my life to represent the people of eastern Washington in Congress. They inspire me every day,” the Republican said in a statement. “They are part of the strength and soul of America — the greatest experiment in self-governance the world has ever known.”

She added, “After much prayer and reflection, I’ve decided the time has come to serve them in new ways. I will not be running for reelection to the People’s House.”

Mrs. McMorris Rodgers, 54, was first elected to the House in 2004. She serves Washington’s 5th Congressional District.

She has been part of Republican leadership for more than 10 years, including as House Republican Conference chairwoman. Last year she became the Energy and Commerce Committee’s first female chairwoman after Republicans secured the House majority.

“Especially as chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I’ve seen the best of Eastern Washington and the United States of America,” she said. “We will spend this year honoring the committee’s rich history — plowing the hard ground necessary to legislate on solutions to make people’s lives better and ensure America wins the future.”

In her statement, she highlighted the help she got from her family while she was running for Congress. Her son Cole was born with Down syndrome, which drove her to become an advocate for those with disabilities. She wrote that her son was with her when the ABLE Act was passed in 2014, a law that created tax benefits for those with disabilities.

New Jersey Rep. Frank Pallone, the Energy and Commerce Committee’s ranking Democrat, said in a statement that her retirement “will be an incredible loss for Congress, which I know she cares about deeply.”

He added, “It’s no secret that getting things done around here is hard work, but Cathy and I have been able to get important legislation passed to lower health care costs, increase transparency in hospital pricing and move the ball forward on establishing a comprehensive national data privacy standard. I’m sad to hear this news and wish her nothing but the best in the next chapter, but I’m glad we have about a year left to get some important priorities across the finish line together.”

House Speaker Mike Johnson said her departure will be a “tremendous loss for the institution.”

“Chairwoman McMorris Rodgers has faithfully served eastern Washington and the American people for over two decades. She has had a remarkable career and is one of the most respected leaders in Congress,” the Louisiana Republican wrote on X. “Cathy is a person of high principle and deep faith, who has been a close friend and confidant of mine and so many others.”

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