SAN DIEGO – Darrell Issa, the Republican congressman from northern San Diego who is facing one of the tightest races in the November mid-term elections, announced on Wednesday that he will retire once his current term ends.
“Throughout my service, I worked hard and never lost sight of the people our government is supposed to serve. Yet with the support of my family, I have decided that I will not seek re-election in California’s 49th District,” Issa said in a statement.
“I am forever grateful to the people of San Diego, Orange and Riverside counties for their support and affording me the honor of serving them all these years,” he added.
After fellow Republican Ed Royce made the same decision on Monday, Issa is the second California congressman to announce that he will not seek re-election in districts that were won two years ago by Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
Issa, 64, is considered to be one of the wealthiest men in Congress and one of those closest to President Donald Trump, given that he was one of the first lawmakers to give the mogul his support.
He said in his statement that he would continue working for causes that are important to him, promoting public policies where he feels he can make a difference.
Since Trump won the 2016 election, every Tuesday a group of demonstrators has gathered outside Issa’s office to express their rejection of the GOP agenda and exert pressure regarding different issues, including approval of the Dream Act or supporting former President Barack Obama’s health care reform.
In the 2016 election, Issa almost lost his re-election bid, defeating his Democratic rival by less than 1 percentage point after it has been speculated that he would lose.
In addition, a campaign has been launched to “flip” the district from Republican to Democrat, and funds have been donated to that effect by actors Leonardo DiCaprio and Jane Fonda, according to reports.