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Another House GOP retirement

Colorado Rep. Joel Hefley (R) announced his retirement yesterday, becoming the second House GOPer this week to step aside prior to the November midterm elections.

Hefley's announcement comes as no major surprise since he had been hinting heavily at retirement for months following his removal as chairman of the House Ethics Committee in January."I have received a great deal of encouragement to run again, and I appreciate that support, but the timing seems right to move on to other opportunities," Hefley told the Associated Press.

Hefley's 5th district is centered in Colorado Springs (the city's media market reaches 95 percent of district voters) and is reliably Republican -- having given President George W. Bush 66 percent in 2004. Former El Paso County Sheriff John Anderson is already in the race on the Republican side. Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce Vice President Jeff Crank, state Sen. Doug Lamborn and Ted Haggard, president of the National Association of Evangelicals, are also mentioned as potential GOP candidates. Jay Fawcett, a Gulf War veteran, is the lone Democrat in the field.

Hefley joins Tennessee Rep. Bill Jenkins (R) in announcing his retirement from the House this week. There are now 15 Republicans not seeking re-election compared to eight Democrats.

By Chris Cillizza  |  February 17, 2006; 3:58 PM ET
Categories:  House  
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I still don't see the wave of retirements among the Republicans that we can compare to the mass exodus of Democrats before the 1994 election.

Posted by: Arlington Dem | February 21, 2006 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Who will "Focus on the Family" Republican evangelical leader Dobson try to get elected to replace the disgraced Dobson backed representative from C.Springs? I would hope that the good people of C.Springs would see through Dobson's religious,Republican zealotism and elect a Democrat to replace Helfley. He has disgraced the electorate in his district and to elect another Republican only adds to the pile of corruption and scandelous behavior that has been the way of life for the Republicans since 1994. If you look at Delay & company, the K-street scandels, Cunningham and the rest of the appropriations committee that are in just as deep as Cunningham, the survelliance of the U.S.citizens, the lies about Iraq and the necessity to go to war, the Katrina debacle, the unpressidented debt and spending by this administration, etc.,etc. and you say I want to continue this mess than follow Dobson and you vote in another Republican and be happy with the tax cuts to the rich while the debt piles up to be paid by your children and grandchildren.

Posted by: jQ | February 20, 2006 2:42 PM | Report abuse

I can't wait for the results of the November elections. How many of the Republican will lose and how many Democrats will win. I think it will be sign of what is to come "after Republicans". If the Democrats are smart they will offer intelligent and sadly enough they will have to be good looking, too.The old adage, "beauty is only skin deep but ugly is clean to the bone. Sorry folks, but the looks of a candidate appears to heavily influence the American voter.

Posted by: M.A.Jay | February 20, 2006 3:48 AM | Report abuse

Hopefully by the time the elections are held all of the crooks will be removved from office . There are so many of them that should not be there in the first place . When crooks win the american people loose .

Posted by: DWB | February 19, 2006 9:38 PM | Report abuse

IL: got a link to back that up? Hefley hardly seems like a stalwart champion of Ethics; the committee was paralyzed/politicized well before January. Can't say there's been any noticeable change in the level of their INactivities since.

Posted by: Judge Crater | February 18, 2006 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Hefley is a symbolic reminder of the Republican Party's arrogance and hubris. His claim to fame was being removed from the Ethics Committee because he dared to defy the Brezhnev Republicans in his party and do his job properly. That tells you everything you need to know about the GOP.

Posted by: Intrepid Liberal | February 17, 2006 11:50 PM | Report abuse

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