Republican congressman announces retirement

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Rep. Darrell Issa, R.-Calif., announced Wednesday that he will not seek reelection this year, offering Democrats a chance to flip his swing district as they battle to regain control of the House in the 2017 mid-term elections.

Issa, who is the former chairman of the House Oversight Committee, won reelection in 2016 by a little more than a percentage point in his San Diego-area district that voted for for Hillary Clinton by 7 points over her opponents in the presidential election, The Hill reported.

The 17-year incumbent would have faced a tough reelection bid in California’s 49th Congressional District that has become increasingly Democratic. Issa’s lack of presence in a 2018 race will allow the Democrats an easier path to victory in the race.

Issa’s decision to leave Congress follows the Monday announcement that House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce, R.-Calif., who also represents a district won by Clinton, will not seek reelection this year, giving Democrats another edge in the mid-terms.

Democrats need to flip 24 seats to in order to secure the House majority.

Issa, who was a businessman prior to entering politics, consistently ranked as one of the wealthiest members of Congress.

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