Veteran California Republican announces retirement
February 29th, 2012
12:00 PM ET
2 years ago

Veteran California Republican announces retirement

(CNN) - California Republican Rep. David Dreier, one of the longest-serving Republicans in the House, announced Wednesday that he will retire at the end of the year.

The veteran lawmaker's decision to retire after nearly 32 years in the chamber was expected because California's redistricting process left him essentially without a House seat to represent. He is the seventh Golden State House member to opt not to run due to the new map that redrew Congressional districts across the state.

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Dreier, who chairs the influential House Rules Committee, which sets the format for debating bills on the floor, took the unusual move of making his announcement public from the well of the House floor.

"First, this is where my fellow Californians sent me to represent them," Dreier explained. "Second, I am a proud institutionalist, and I believe that this institution is as great as it has ever been."

In his speech Dreier said he thought about leaving Congress three years ago, but wanted to serve another term to push through key priorities like the three recent trade agreements, bills to cut federal spending and new rules allowing both parties to offer changes to legislation on the floor.

Despite leading a panel that is known for its predictable partisan split on virtually every rule it passes to detail the structure for debating legislation, Dreier is well liked by members of both parties.

As he stood in the House chamber, a place that has witnessed bitter partisan divide over recent months, the California Republican appealed to his colleagues to work together.

"I have always believed that Republicans and Democrats alike serve the American people best when we find ways to build bipartisan consensus," Dreier said.

His announcement comes a day after another moderate Republican, Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine, surprised colleagues saying she would not to run for re-election. She pointed to the partisan atmosphere in Washington as a chief reason for her retirement.


Filed under: Congress
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Wow, another one. Things look tenous for the GOP all around come November.
    I was sorry to hear about Sen. Snowe. She saw her duty to country before Party for the most part.
    Think it might be because some people are sick and tired of Tea?

    February 29, 2012 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  2. nothing new here

    Hey, thanks Tea Party/Religious Right, for screwing up the GOP.
    I just wish these activists would have just started their own party, and left the GOP alone.

    February 29, 2012 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  3. Bill

    Add that to the Drive for 25. House goes to Dems. in November.

    February 29, 2012 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  4. Data Driven

    Dreier will not be missed by the majority of Californians.

    In California, we took districting out of the hands of politicians and into the hands of a nonpartisan commission. The result is that extremists like Dreier and Brian Bilbray will no longer enjoy automatic reelections in gerrymandered districts. The long-term result will be representatives who will be more beholden to the citizens they represent instead of to special interests.

    I recommend that the whole country follow California's lead in nonpartisan districting.

    February 29, 2012 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  5. GROVER NORQUIST IS A ENEMY OF THE STATE

    Adios! Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

    February 29, 2012 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  6. cjg

    I would like to see the GOP nationwide drop like flies....the tide will turn back to more rational thinking!

    February 29, 2012 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  7. Cain = Moron

    Looks like the Democrats will take the house LOL.

    February 29, 2012 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  8. Thomas

    Take your toys and go home, what a baby.

    With the new insider trading laws, David Dreier will be better off in the private " Lobby " sector.

    February 29, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  9. JoeP

    A great example of what non-partisan redistricting can accomplish. No more long term incumbents being guaranteed re-election because they've gerrymandered their districts.

    February 29, 2012 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  10. sielingfan

    I guess I'm an outsider, because redistricting a candidate out of office before the election even happens sounds like a bad case of gerrymandering to me. But I'm not from Cali, so I don't really know.

    February 29, 2012 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  11. GI Joe.

    D 4 O

    I totally agree with you. It was a good nation when we had a congress working FOR we the people, and not just their party.

    February 29, 2012 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  12. judy

    goodie goodie goodie. Most repos wanted redistricing so they would have the upper hand. Glad california took matters into their own hands. My state has drawn the map 3 times already. Of course it is a repo state and they have effectivly tied most democrats hands. Many states have done this and it will have a negative effect this election. Obama/Biden 2012

    February 29, 2012 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  13. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    Data Driven
    Dreier will not be missed by the majority of Californians.
    In California, we took districting out of the hands of politicians and into the hands of a nonpartisan commission. The result is that extremists like Dreier and Brian Bilbray will no longer enjoy automatic reelections in gerrymandered districts. The long-term result will be representatives who will be more beholden to the citizens they represent instead of to special interests.
    I recommend that the whole country follow California's lead in nonpartisan districting.
    =============================================================================================
    There is no such thing as a "non-partisan commission". Whoever appoints the commission determines what they will do by virtue of the people they appoint. I suppose you would call a commission with Pelosi, Reid and Obama "non-partisan" right?

    So do tell how many Democrat districts were re-districted into Republican leaning districts? Likely NONE.

    February 29, 2012 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  14. GI Joe.

    @sielingfan
    ---------
    Redistrictng takes place every 10 years - after the census shows how many people live in a certain area.

    Remember that - then you will know at least one thing about this country and the long-standing rules.

    February 29, 2012 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  15. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    GI Joe:
    D 4 O, I LIKE that! lol.I ALWAYS look out for your posts my friend.

    February 29, 2012 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  16. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Judy and GI Joe thanks for pointing out the issue of redistricting. We need to be aware of the crucial yet behind-the-scenes ways that the GOP is hoping to take the WH in November. People need to realize that these methods along with a myriad of revisions to Voting Laws IS the shiny object we should ALL be keeping in our sites, not thease Teatarded morons they've got running, Obama can handle them!
    Obama 2012.

    February 29, 2012 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  17. gg

    give the republicans the power and your kids and grand kids could be working on a corperate labour farm

    February 29, 2012 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  18. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I swallowed a couple of words in my last post. It should've read: "that the GOP is hoping to use to take the WH in November".
    Posting @ work on the down-low! tee hee!

    February 29, 2012 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  19. dave

    @sielingfan

    You're not an outsider. You're just an ignorant person who chooses to see the world as you feel rather than it is. And I'm sure you vote. If you want to know why politicians lie and say stupid things look in the mirror.

    February 29, 2012 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  20. Jules

    Best thing for the GOP is that they lose everything in Nov. That should finally put an end to pulling the party so far to the right that moderate Republicans cannot survive. If they lose everything, then the moderates will be able to rebuild the party and the brand.

    February 29, 2012 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  21. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    Maybe the Republicans should sue and have the courts decide it like the Democrats did in Texas? But with the liberal "non-partisan" courts in California I doubt it would be successful.

    February 29, 2012 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  22. Noodle Nose Johnson

    And soon he will come out of the closet and apologize for voting down any Gay rights legislation for the last three decades. Look it up.

    February 29, 2012 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  23. Tea Party Dem

    after we have finished with the rinos, we will go after the dinos.

    eventually, the Republic will be restored.

    your welcome.

    February 29, 2012 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  24. Fla Pete

    @Truth,you can keep the people quiet just so long.Repubs can run but because of their mouths ,they can't hide.We're giving the Repubs the rope,just waiting for them to hang themselves as usual.@Tea party Dem was never a Dem to begin with ,doesn't know the difference between the parties,what a joker.

    February 29, 2012 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  25. Keith

    California Republican. Isn't that an oxymoron?

    February 29, 2012 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
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