One of the House Republicans who voted against the impeachment of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has announced retirement.
Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) said Saturday he will not seek reelection.
“Eight years ago, when I first ran for Congress, I promised to treat my time in office as a high-intensity deployment. Through my bipartisan work on the Armed Services and Intelligence Committees, chairing the Cyberspace Solarium Commission, and chairing the Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party, we’ve accomplished more on this deployment than I could have ever imagined,” Gallagher said in a statement.
“But the Framers intended citizens to serve in Congress for a season and then return to their private lives. Electoral politics was never supposed to be a career and, trust me, Congress is no place to grow old. And so, with a heavy heart, I have decided not to run for re-election,” he continued.
Ding dong another RINO GONE!!
Rep. Mike Gallagher, who voted to let Mayorkas off the hook, won’t run for re-election
Time for an America First Patriot to fill his seat pic.twitter.com/3IP05KaH3D
— DC_Draino (@DC_Draino) February 10, 2024
🚨 BREAKING: Congressman Mike Gallagher, who was one of the Republicans that voted against the impeachment of DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, has announced he will not be running for re-election in 2024
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) February 10, 2024
Gallagher, 39, was widely viewed as a rising star before the fallout of voting against the Mayorkas impeachment.
A 39-year-old former Marine who served in the Iraq War, Gallagher has represented his Green Bay-based district since 2017.
He is widely viewed as a rising star and was the GOP’s desired recruit to challenge Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc.) this cycle, but he passed on a run.
Gallagher’s announcement comes just days after his controversial vote against impeaching Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
His defection, along with those of Reps. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) and Tom McClintock (R-Calif.) led to the impeachment effort failing.
Gallagher has faced significant backlash for his vote from allies of former President Trump — including threats of a primary challenge — for his vote.
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Gallagher intends to focus on defense policy upon leaving Congress.
“Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher, chairman of the Select Committee on China, will not seek reelection this November. He tells me he will leave Congress but plans to continue work on defense policy,” Lawrence Andrea writes.
NEW: Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher, chairman of the Select Committee on China, will not seek reelection this November.
— Lawrence Andrea (@lawrencegandrea) February 10, 2024
From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Wisconsin Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher, chairman of the Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party, will not seek reelection this November.
Gallagher told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel he will leave Congress at the end of his current term to enter the private sector and spend more time with his young family. He said his future work will be in-line with his national security goals and focus on defense policy.
“I really just feel like I’ve accomplished much more than I even thought I could when I set out, and I firmly don’t believe that the best use for the next chapter of my career is staying in Congress for another decade,” Gallagher said in an interview.
“Even though my title may change, my job may change, my mission is always going to remain the same,” he said. “My mission is to prevent World War III. I’ve dedicated myself to restoring conventional deterrence in order to prevent a war with China, and so whatever I do next will be an extension of that mission.”
Gallagher, 39, was first elected to Wisconsin’s 8th Congressional District in 2016 and quickly made foreign policy and attempts at congressional reform his focus. The former Marine and intelligence officer has argued for term limits and said his decision to leave stays true to that thought process.
In the meantime, House Republicans will prepare for another attempt to impeachment Mayorkas.
Per CBS News:
The House will vote again on impeaching Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Tuesday, after it fell short by one vote earlier this week.
House Majority Leader Steve Scalise is returning to Washington next week after working remotely in January while completing cancer treatment. The Louisiana Republican could give the House GOP enough votes to impeach Mayorkas.
A special election in New York’s third congressional district to replace former GOP Rep. George Santos puts pressure on House Republicans to move quickly on another vote. The swing seat could affect the House’s Republican majority, which already has a razor-thin margin. The impeachment vote is scheduled the same day as the special election.
Mayorkas narrowly survived the first impeachment vote after a small group of Republicans helped sink the GOP-led effort. As well as three GOP defections, all Democrats were in attendance, including one who unexpectedly showed up in his hospital scrubs after intestinal surgery. A fourth Republican switched his vote at the last minute to give GOP leaders the opportunity to bring up the vote again.