Republican North County congressman Darrell Issa today (January 10) announced that he will be retiring from his post in the 49th District this fall. The publication Politico called Issa’s move “the latest sign of a growing Democratic wave in this year’s midterm elections,” although North County may not be riding the same wave.
Still, there is agreement that Issa faced a tough reelection fight in the fall. He was first elected in 2000 and in 2010 became chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. He aggressively led investigations of the Obama administration.
“Issa barely survived the 2016 election,” noted Politico, and Democrats were aiming to displace him this fall. Hillary Clinton carried his district by 7 points in the 2016 presidential race.
Issa won much praise for coming up with an H-1B bill that is making headway in the House and winning praise from those who want reforms of the program that brings foreigners in to take jobs in the U.S.
The fact that he led a committee that looked into wrongdoing caused some snickers. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Issa was twice arrested in 1972 on weapons charges and was convicted of possession of an unregistered handgun.
The organization “Flip the 49th Neighbors in Action,” a San Diego County and Orange County grassroots organization, today rejoiced and called Issa “one of the worst and most powerful members of Congress.” He is also one of the richest members of Congress, with a net worth valued at over a quarter billion dollars.