Rep. Kathleen Rice of New York announces retirement, the thirtieth House Democrat to do so ahead midterms

On Tuesday, four-term lawmaker and veteran prosecutor Rep. Kathleen Rice of New York announced that she will not be seeking re-election in the midterms this upcoming November.

Rice now marks the 30th House of Representatives Democrat to break the news that they will be retiring or seek another office after their current term expires. 

“I have always believed that holding political office is neither destiny nor a right. As elected officials, we must give all we have and then know when it is time to allow others to serve,” explained Rice, who is a representative for New York’s 4th Congressional District. She made the comment in the statement announcing her retirement.

Rice formerly served as federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s office in Philadelphia before serving as Nassau County district attorney. She was then elected to Congress in 2014, following behind fellow Democrat Carolyn McCarthy.

The Republican Party is looking for a net gain of just five seats in the House of Representatives next year in order to take back the chamber’s majority it lost to the Democrats in the 2018 elections. But Republicans seem to have history on their side going into the 2022 midterms, as on average, the party that wins the White House in a presidential election loses out on more than 25 House seats in the very next midterm election.

The retirements by 20 House Democrats is the most of the party in the lower chamber of Congress since the 1992 cycle, when 31 Democratic legislators retired or chose to run for other offices. In comparison, just 14 House Republicans have decided to retire or seek election in a different office.

National Republican Congressional Committee spokesman Mike Berg has attributed the retirements to the fact that Democrats face losing the majority: “Thirty House Democrats have called it quits because they know their majority is doomed,” he said.




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