CA GOP Rep. Ed Royce won’t seek reelection, creating bigger opening for Democrats

January 9, 2018

House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Rep. Ed Royce announced Monday he will not run for reelection, boosting Democrats’ chances of winning his Southern California district as they work to regain control of the U.S. House this year.

The Republican from Fullerton was the first of his California colleagues to announce a retirement in what’s expected to be a tough year for the GOP.

Surprised party leaders learned that Royce would not seek reelection when the 13-term congressman published his announcement on Twitter, saying he wanted to concentrate on his final year as committee chairman, according to a GOP source who asked not to be named in order to discuss private conversations.

The 66-year-old Royce didn’t mention the prospect of a difficult reelection campaign in his statement. But Royce, whose district is partly situated in the battleground of Orange County, was among the House lawmakers considered vulnerable in the upcoming midterm elections.

The district backed Hillary Clinton for president by eight percentage points in 2016, and Royce had drawn challenges from a handful of viable Democrats.

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