Rep. Paul Mitchell announced Wednesday his plans to retire from office, blaming the polarized atmosphere of Washington, D.C.
The Michigan Republican explained in a floor speech that he wanted to spend more time with his family, but also shared his frustration with political infighting.
“It appears to me that rhetoric overwhelms policy, and politics consumes much of the oxygen in this city,” he said.
In an interview with Politico, Mr. Mitchell explained that the “rhetoric and vitriol” distracted lawmakers from the policies they should be pursuing and said he didn’t come to focus on elections.
There are just five Republicans in Michigan’s 14-member delegation to Congress after Rep. Justin Amash left the party, becoming an independent and backing impeachment of President Trump.
Mr. Mitchell, for his part, has spoken out against the president over his comments about four progressive freshman congresswomen — including fellow Michigan lawmaker Rep. Rashida Tlaib.
“I share the political frustrations with some members of the other party, but these comments are beneath leaders,” he tweeted last week.
Mr. Mitchell‘s district is considered solidly Republican.
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