April 9th, 2010
08:26 AM ET
12 years ago

Stupak to announce retirement

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/03/21/art.stupakord0321.gi.jpg caption ="Bart Stupak will announce his retirement Friday."]Marquette, Michigan (CNN) - Nine-term Democratic Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Michigan, will reveal Friday he is retiring from Congress, several Democratic sources close to Stupak tell CNN.

The anti-abortion Democrat has been facing opposition from both the right and the left for his 11th hour deal with the White House that he says bans federal funding for abortion. The deal ultimately led to his decisive vote in favor of the health care bill.

Stupak first informed Democratic leaders last week that he was considering retiring. He has received calls from President Obama, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and others urging him to run again.

Democratic sources in Washington and Michigan say they fear losing Stupak, a historically popular Democrat in a sprawling conservative district, will mean likely losing his seat to the Republicans.

According to one Democratic source familiar with his plans, Stupak is expected to make the case that he is leaving because he has accomplished what he went to Washington in 1992 to do - pass health care reform.

He will also say he considered retiring several times in the past.

Responding to news of the retirement, National Republican Congressional Committee spokesman Ken Spain said: “After selling his soul to Nancy Pelosi, it appears that Bart Stupak finally found the courage to tell her no. The political fallout over the Democrats’ government takeover of healthcare has put the political careers of many Democrats in jeopardy thanks in-part to Stupak’s decision to abandon his alleged pro-life principles. Unfortunately for Pelosi, she was unable to strong-arm Stupak one last time as she becomes increasingly aware of the fact that her hold on the Speaker’s gavel is loosening by the day.”

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soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Testify

    Makes you wonder if he is not getting money or just buckeling due to the bill passing...sad

    April 9, 2010 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  2. char

    1 down 218 to go.

    April 9, 2010 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  3. oranjepants

    I feel for Rep. Stupak. I can't defend nor do I agree with his decision on the healthcare vote – it must have been very difficult. All that he has done to protect unborn children for these many years seems to be lost to most people because of this one vote.

    On the one hand, I'm hopeful that he will be replaced by someone who can stay strong in their will and convictions for half as long as Rep. Stupak has done. On the other hand, I'm wondering how far he would have been propelled had he voted no on this healthcare bill?

    April 9, 2010 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  4. Tony

    No matter what people say Congressman Stupak served Michigan with his constituants in mind. I have known Bart for many years and has been more then willing to help out people when need be. It is going to be a great loss to the people of his district.

    I know the Tea Party is currently up in his area which i am not happy about. Considering they, who are not even from Michigan or probably know anything about it, are trying to say that it is because of him the area is depressed. What does the Tea Party know about the the U.P. or the northern half of the lower penninusla? Nothing!!

    April 9, 2010 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  5. DAVE

    I guess he will feel better in his own mind knowing he wasnt fired. (eventhough he would have been)

    April 9, 2010 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  6. femspotter

    Way to hate, Ken Spain!

    April 9, 2010 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  7. A Kickin' Donkey

    The road back for the Republicans includes demonstrating fiscal responsibility.

    Democrats should beat them to the punch. By ending the war in Iraq, we save BILLIONS of DOLLARS per WEEK. Democrats should cut the budget by cutting the war and they should start to tell that story NOW.

    Ending the war in Afghanistan saves EVEN MORE.

    The GOP has never seen a DOD budget line item that could be reduced. When they start talking generically about controlling RUNAWAY spending, they need to be pressed on how, EXACTLY, they plan to achieve this .... the what ... the how ....

    It is impossible to talk about real deficit reduction without reducing the amount of money spent on our Industrial Military Complex.

    April 9, 2010 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  8. John G.

    He's retiring because he doesn't want to catch a political beat down come November when all of his constituents-you know, the people who sent him to Congress in the first place-decide that he, like the rest of the Congressional Democrats, has anything but their best interest in mind.

    The executive order is thin and can be repealed by ANY president including the current one if he feels like he is losing his base in the 2014 election cycle. The language of the order should have been added to the bill as an amendment so that the concerns of the people who are opposed to the whole sale slaughter of unborn children could have been addressed instead of being given lip service.

    April 9, 2010 09:21 am at 9:21 am |

    The Republican response is pathetic. They never cease to find a way to divide thsi country with their vitroilic hateful language. What a shame these so-called christians are!

    April 9, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  10. mark in atlanta

    Good riddance. No point in having a Dem hold the seat if he is going to try to derail the most important legislation in at least 50 years because he feels he is on a god-given mission to deny as many women as possible their constitutionally guaranteed right to choice.

    April 9, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  11. Bubba

    Nobody likes a man with a conscience. Do your best and get stuff thrown at you anyway.

    April 9, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  12. gt

    good ridence,,,, he caved in,,,, and sold out...

    April 9, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  13. Jim

    Be sure to re-read Ken Spain's comments in this article. Do the Republicans ever actually talk about policiy or is it all just vitriol and mockery? What is their plan for dealing with rip-off insurance companies (that has a chance of working)? If you are tired of the tone America, stop voting Republican until they tone it down.

    April 9, 2010 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  14. Annie, Atlanta

    If he tries to make the case that he accomplished what he set out to do in passing health care, I'm going to have to call BS on him. He held it hostage.

    From all appearances, his plan was to restrict a woman's right to choose, and he failed. On a personal note, it makes me angry when men decide to legislate women's uteruses. Where do they get off! Can you imagine if women tried to legislate men's bodies? All hell would break loose.

    Good riddance.

    April 9, 2010 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  15. I voted for Obama and proud of it in Oregon

    this was to be expected from being threatend and the media just keeps it alive . 2 things need to stop 1. shut Palin and Tea Party up
    2. prosecute the Bush Cheney adm. and move on

    April 9, 2010 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  16. Wisconsin Don

    "I'll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today". (Wimpy to Popeye)

    Now watch for the position he gets as his "hamburger" for his vote. Remember he was offered a job by Obama to support the healthcare fiasco.

    Wisconsin Don
    Racine Wisconsin

    April 9, 2010 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  17. mother in Pa

    His retirement was a given the day he voted for the health care bill. The fallout is too great on his political career and will continue for any person who remains.

    April 9, 2010 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  18. Cheryl


    You may be facing opposition from all sides, but there are also those of us who support you. You represent those of us Democrats who are pro-life, thank you for your time in Washington, please consider running again to play your part in standing up the the disgraceful polarization that is becoming ever more rampant.

    April 9, 2010 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  19. Eric

    Im glad these people stopped drinking Obama's Kool-Aid. You will be able to hear a pin drop in the White House pretty soon Mr. Obama but thats ok Castro still loves you.

    April 9, 2010 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  20. Linda

    Another one bites the dust! Bart Stupak betrayed pro-life supporters and voted for Nancy Pelosi. I am sure he knew he was retiring and that is why he made the deal, he was a sell out. Let's see what job in the administration he will end up with. I am tired of these lame ducks deciding the policies for all of us Americans and that includes Chris Dodd and his financial reform. Let this be a signal to all Democrats who voted for the Healthcare debacle!

    April 9, 2010 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  21. Andrew Messenger

    See ya. Smart move.

    April 9, 2010 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  22. JAS

    Yippee~the rats are jumping off of the sinking ship 🙂

    April 9, 2010 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  23. PJ

    Congratulations to Stupak on a great career and people owe him thanks, not the attacks being forced on him by the idiots in the tea party. He did what politicians are supposed to do: come to an agreement so that both sides get what they want. He put the good of America first, if only there were more people like him in Congress

    April 9, 2010 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  24. Jim Steele

    This guy folded like a cheap suitcase. He should be marched out with pitchforks and torches.

    April 9, 2010 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  25. Scabutch

    I think you'll find out eventually that Senator Stupak got a WHOLE LOT MORE from Obama and Pelosi for his willingness to sell his soul !!!

    April 9, 2010 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
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