House Democrat to pass on seeking re-election
November 26th, 2011
10:53 AM ET
11 years ago

House Democrat to pass on seeking re-election

(CNN) - Rep. Charlie Gonzalez of Texas and chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus will forgo seeking an eighth term in the U.S. House of Representatives.

“I've been in Congress for 14 years and I want to do something else - what that is, I really don't know. But financially, I would like to be productive and have the resources to make a better life,” Gonzalez, a Democrat, told The San-Antonio Express News on Friday.

Gonzalez represents the Lone Star State's 20th Congressional District, which covers half of San Antonio. He succeeded his father, the late Rep. Henry B. Gonzalez, who held the seat from 1961-1998.

A vocal advocate for voting rights, Gonzalez was involved in a lawsuit against the state over a GOP-carved redistricting map that he and other Democratic lawmakers said failed to reflect the growing minority population in Texas.

Gonzalez told the San-Antonio Express news that his decision, though “tremendously emotional,” stemmed from the need to provide financial stability for his family and not from the reapportionment of the new map, which removed downtown San Antonio from his district.

“I still find the job hugely rewarding, but the demands pull me somewhere else,” he said.

Filed under: Congressional Hispanic Caucus • House • Texas
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. Tony in Maine

    Regardless of the reason, it is the nation's loss as well as a loss for the citizens Gonzalez represented.

    November 26, 2011 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  2. AGuest9

    "But financially, I would like to be productive and have the resources to make a better life"

    Yes, because we know that $135k a year and full medical and retirement benefits are equivalent to poverty wages.

    November 26, 2011 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  3. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    "But financially, I would like to be productive and have the resources to make a better life,”

    So a Congressional salary of $174,000 isn't enough and he needs more "to make a better life?" Sounds like the exact same "greed" all the Lefties keep accusing the Republicans of. But Gonzalez is right about one thing: there are few occupations less productive–or more counter-productive–than being a member of the US Congress. Getting in the way of real productive people is what they do best.

    November 26, 2011 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  4. Keith in Austin

    One more Liberal Democrat bites the dust but will continue to bleed American Taxpayers with his $135k pension and free healthcare for life!

    November 26, 2011 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  5. Donkey Party

    So predictable the comments from the anti-American, minority-hating domestic terrorist GOP-baggers (and even nuttier libertarians). Civilized society wishes you'd just slink back into your holes and perish.

    November 26, 2011 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  6. fred ca

    I am impressed that he used 'financially productive'. As he knows (and his daddy taught him) he could have remained as a lackey for the demo leadership and his life would have remained 'financially lucrative'.

    November 26, 2011 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  7. Anonymous

    You guys do understand that this man has to maintain 2 residences and it is not cheap to live in Washington. Everyone has a right to change jobs after 15 years.

    November 26, 2011 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  8. Hawk

    To keith in austin, and i guess that all the republicans don't matter to you tea baggers. the likes of tom delay, phil gramm. and the list goes on and on. and he is not biting the dust he is stepping down on his own.

    November 26, 2011 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  9. AmericanDan

    Why so much vitriol against a government employees? Their salaries are modest compared to the CEO class, who make millions, pay less than working people in taxes, and view America as one big wealth extraction system.

    November 26, 2011 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |