By Annie Russo
Back in January, I blogged about all of the congressional retirements already announced and those that we expected to come especially as redistricting maps are finalized by many states. Both senators and their colleagues in the House have not disappointed on this front, with now 21 House members and 10 senators retiring completely from public office at the end of the year.
In surprising announcements Monday night and Tuesday morning, each chamber will lose a seasoned Republican veteran in the next Congress. Three-term Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe late Monday announced that she would not be running for re-election in November. Snowe, a member of both the Senate Commerce and Finance Committees, has been a friend to airports advocating for the alternative minimum tax exemption, AIP funding and EAS funding during her tenure in both the House and Senate.
On Tuesday morning, Congressman David Dreier from California announced that he would not seek re-election this November as well. Dreier, a Capitol Hill veteran having served since 1980, is best known for his tenure in the top Republican spot on the powerful House Rules Committee. Dreier is considered by many to be a victim of the California redistricting map, which essentially eliminated his district. Certainly, Dreier’s institutional and parliamentary knowledge of the House will not be easy to replace.
As we continue to creep closer to Election Day and primary filing dates, we can expect a few more surprise announcements. I don’t think we’ve seen the end of the wave just yet.