Issa will not seek re-election after serving ninth term

Issa will not seek re-election after serving ninth term

Issa will not seek re-election after serving ninth term

The founder of a successful car-alarm company, Mr. Issa is one of Congress's wealthiest members.

He told reporters Wednesday as he left the House floor that "it was time", but that he plans to stay involved in politics and spend his own money helping Republicans. In 2016, the district's voters preferred Clinton by 8 points over Republican Donald Trump.

Issa had just managed to win in the 2016 general election with just half a percentage point.

But he'd maintained he meant to run for re-election, telling CNN in November that hew as 100% certain he'd seek another term.

In 2012, Issa launched one of the first congressional inquiries into the Benghazi attacks, which resulted in the deaths of two diplomats and two Central Intelligence Agency contractors during Clinton's tenure as secretary of state.

Issa was a national figure and a staple on cable talk shows when he chaired the House Oversight House Oversight and Government Reform Committee from from 2011 to 2015. Issa routinely ripped into Mr. Obama, his aides and cabinet, as well as their handling of a gunrunning investigation known as Fast and Furious, the Internal Revenue Service's slow-walking of political groups' applications for nonprofit status, the terrorist attack on an American government compound in Benghazi, Libya, and many other matters.

Republican Rep. Darrell Issa announced Wednesday that he will retire in 2018.

Early in the 2018 election cycle, Democrats identified the Orange County-area Republican seats as top targets.

On Tuesday, another Southern California Republican, Rep. Ed Royce, who chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee, announced he too would not run for reelection.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee placed field organizers in Issa's district almost a near ago, and opened an Orange County office past year aimed at flipping the Issa and Royce seats to Democrats.

Diane Harkey, a former state lawmaker who is now an elected Republican representative on the California State Board of Equalization, a tax administration board, is poised to enter the race, a Republican source said.

Andrew Godinich, a DCCC spokesman, said Democrats are "in a strong position" to claim the seat in November and blamed the Republican legislative agenda for Issa's retirement. "Yet with the support of my family, I have decided that I will not seek reelection in California's 49th District", he said in a statement.

So far, four Democrats have announced their intention to run for the seat: Doug Applegate, Sara Jacobs, Paul Kerr and Mike Levin.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee immediately released a statement crediting grassroots activism in the district. "We are truly grateful for his service", said Rep. Steve Stivers, chairman of the NRCC.

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