McMorris Rodgers won’t seek re-election after 20 years representing Eastern Wash.
Feb 8, 2024, 4:22 PM
(Photo: Kent Nishimura/Getty Images)
After representing Washington’s 5th District in the U.S. House of Representatives for 20 years, Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers announced Thursday she is not running for reelection in November.
“For years now, my team and I have lived and worked by our values of having fun while we SERVE — to Seek excellence, that Everybody matters, to Responsibly own it, practice Vigilant integrity, and Embrace change,” McMorris Rodgers wrote in a statement, while explaining the acronym. “I’m proud of how it’s helped us be more effective and deliver results to my district and the hardworking people of this country. There is no doubt I’ve had the best staff on my team. They are smart, strategic, and committed to building trust.”
After much prayer and reflection, I’ve decided the time has come to serve the people of Eastern Washington in new ways. I will not be running for re-election to the People’s House.
My full statement: pic.twitter.com/rGeLnJoT6L
— CathyMcMorrisRodgers (@cathymcmorris) February 8, 2024
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Last year, the McMorris Rodgers served as chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee — the first female lawmaker to do so — after acting as the chair of the House Republican Conference from 2013 to 2019.
“Especially as Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I’ve seen the best of Eastern Washington and the United States of America,” McMorris Rodgers continued. “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.”
Energy and Commerce Committee Ranking Member Frank Pallone, D-N.J., praised McMorris Rodgers for her work ethic and her desire to get key legislation through their chamber.
“It’s no secret that getting things done around here is hard work, but (McMorris Rodgers) 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,” Pallone said in a prepared statement.
Before becoming the chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee — when Republicans became the majority in the House — she served as the panel’s ranking Republican for two years. According to The Washington Post, McMorris Rodgers spent the past year leading efforts to limit the Biden administration’s pause on natural gas export approvals.
McMorris Rodgers worked alongside former President Donald Trump during his term, backing his decision to pull the U.S. out of the Paris Climate Agreement in 2017. In 2021, she had originally planned to object to the results of the 2020 presidential election in the House, but later agreed that she would uphold the electoral college results after the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol.
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Now that her seat is open for the November election, the Republican Party will likely have an advantage maintaining it as McMorris Rodgers won all of her 10 elections by at least 10 percentage points. She defeated Natasha Hill in 2022 59.1-40.7.
Financial Services Committee Chairman Patrick T. McHenry, R-North Carolina, and Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Kay Granger, R-Texas, also announced they will not return to the House when members of the 119th Congress take their seats in 2025.