Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence To Retire, Joins Dozens Of House Dems Who Won’t Seek Re-Election
Rep. Brenda Lawrence, D-Mich., speaks during the Congressional Black Caucus news conference in the Capitol on Black priorities in the infrastructure bill and the Build Back Better agenda on Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021.
Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Democratic Michigan Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence announced her upcoming retirement on Tuesday, becoming the 25th House Democrat who won’t seek re-election as the 2022 midterms approach.

“Today, after reflecting on my journey — and oh, my goodness, what a journey — and having conversations with my family, I am announcing that I will not be seeking reelection to Congress,” Lawrence said in a video posted to Twitter Tuesday night.

“I am incredibly grateful for the people in Michigan’s 14th Congressional District, who placed their trust and vote in me — in me, just a little black girl from the east side of Detroit. You made me your congresswoman. It has been a tremendous honor and privilege to be your voice in Congress and to fight for our communities and issues in Washington, D.C., on a national platform.”

Politico notes that Lawrence, who was first elected to Congress in 2014, had quickly ascended through the ranks on the House Appropriations Committee, as well as the Congressional Black Caucus. She narrowly lost an election for a leadership position in the last Congress, so her retirement came as a surprise.

Politico also noted redistricting issues when reporting on Lawrence’s upcoming retirement, which the congresswoman seemed to address in her announcement. “As we have a new redistricting map, a new generation of leaders will step up. We need to make sure our elected officials in Michigan and across the country look like our communities,” she said.

Lawrence’s decision comes just one day after another high-profile black Congressman announced his retirement. Illinois Representative Bobby Rush (D) announced his retirement Monday. The Daily Wire reported:

Rush, 75, told the Chicago Sun-Times Monday that he would not seek another term. Rush represents Illinois’s 1st Congressional district, which encompasses parts of the South Side of Chicago and extends to the city’s southwest suburbs. The district is a Democratic stronghold drawn under the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in order to facilitate the election of a black representative to Congress. He was first elected in 1992, and notably defeated a primary challenge from then-State Senator Barack Obama in 2000…

Rush’s district is not expected to be competitive, but his retirement is the latest in a series of high-profile retirements from veteran Democrats, as expectations of a Republican wave continue to build.

The Washington Post further reported Monday that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is expected to “step down” after the 2022 midterms.

The Cook Political Report also updated its ratings for the House last week, with the new ratings showing that Republicans have the advantage in enough competitive House races that they are projected to reclaim the majority in the House in 2022.

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