Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Committee, announced Thursday she won’t seek reelection.

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

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

Read the full statement:

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The Hill reports:

The Washington Republican, who was elected to the House in 2004, is the first female lawmaker to chair the Energy and Commerce Committee.

She currently serves the 5th Congressional District of Washington, which includes Spokane.

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“Especially as Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I’ve seen the best of Eastern Washington and the United States of America,” her statement 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.”

The Washington lawmaker won the race to become the top Republican on the Energy and Commerce Committee in 2020 after being appointed to the committee in 2010.

She took over leadership of the committee at the start of 2023 when Republicans took over the House majority. She did not face a term limit next year and could have sought to serve as chair, assuming the GOP retained the majority, in the next Congress.

From Axios:

McMorris Rodgers marks more than a dozen House Republicans who said they are retiring without immediate plans to seek higher office.

That includes nearly a half dozen, including senior members of powerful committees, who have made their announcements in the last two months.

Financial Services Committee Chair Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) and Appropriations Committee Chair Kay Granger (R-Texas) have also said they won’t run again.

On the Energy and Commerce Committee alone, Republicans are losing a huge swath of members.

Reps. Michael Burgess (R-Texas) – the second most senior member – Larry Bucshon (R-Ind.), Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.), John Curtis (R-Utah), Greg Pence (R-Ind.) and Kelly Armstrong (R-N.D.) are all retiring.

Another member of the panel, Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio), also resigned last month to become president of Youngstown State University.

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