- The Washington Times
Monday, December 20, 2021

Three more House Democrats called it quits on Monday, bringing the total number of retirements in the caucus before the midterm elections to 23.

Reps. Stephanie Murphy of Florida, Lucille Roybal-Allard of California and Albio Sires of New Jersey became the latest batch of lawmakers to leave the Democrats’ ranks amid concerns their party will lose the majority by a large margin in 2022. 

While two of the three districts are considered safe Democratic seats, Republicans responded to the retirements as a sign that Democrats see a red wave coming in November.

“House Democrats are running for the exits so fast they might set a new land speed record,” said Congressional Leadership Fund Communications Director Calvin Moore. “But who can blame them? With crises on every front, Democrats see the writing on the wall and know their days in the majority are soon coming to an end.”

The National Republican Congressional Committee compared the triple Democratic lawmaker retirement to “scoring a hat trick.”

“House Democrats’ nightmare before Christmas just keeps getting worse. Nobody wants to run as a Democrat because they know voters are rejecting their push for defunding police, higher taxes, and open borders,” NRCC spokesman Mike Berg said in a statement.

Ms. Murphy, a third-term lawmaker, announced her decision on Twitter. 

“I’ve decided not to seek another term in Congress,” she stated. “Serving Central Florida has been the honor of my life, but it’s also been incredibly challenging for my family and me. This was not an easy decision, but it is the right decision. Thank you for everything.” 

She came into office by defeating GOP incumbent Rep. John Mica in 2016.

Ms. Murphy, 43, who represents the state’s 7th Congressional District, won her last election by a margin of 12 percentage points with 55% of the vote against her Republican challenger. Mr. Biden won the district with more than 54% of the vote in 2020, to 44% for then-President Dona Trump.

Mr. Sires, 70, is expected to announce his retirement formally at the end of the year, reported the New Jersey Globe. He has represented the state’s 8th Congressional District since 2006, when he won a special election after Democrat Bob Menendez vacated the seat to serve in the Senate.

Mr. Sires won reelection in 2020 with 74% of the vote, and Mr. Biden won his district by a 73%-36% margin.

Mr. Menendez’s son, Robert J. Menendez Jr. a 36-year-old lawyer and Commissioner of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, is considered the current front-runner for the seat.

Ms. Roybal-Allard, 80, has not officially announced her retirement but told two close sources she plans to not seek reelection in 2022, The Hill reported. She has served in the House since 1993 and chairs the powerful Homeland Security Appropriations subcommittee.  

Since the 2010 census, her district has been considered the most Latino-populated district in the nation.

She won her last re-election with 72.7% of the vote, and Mr. Biden won the district with 77%. 

• Kerry Picket can be reached at kpicket@washingtontimes.com.

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