Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) has decided not to run for reelection.
Wolf announced his decision on Tuesday. He has first elected in 1980 and, if he had run again, would have been seeking his 18th term in Congress.
Read Wolf’s statement below:
I have decided not to seek re-election to the U.S. Congress in 2014. It has been an honor to serve the people of northern Virginia and the Shenandoah Valley. I thank my constituents for giving me the privilege of representing them in Congress for 34 years.
As a follower of Jesus, I am called to work for justice and reconciliation, and to be an advocate for those who cannot speak for themselves. I plan to focus my future work on human rights and religious freedom – both domestic and international – as well as matters of the culture and the American family. My passion for these issues has been influenced by the examples of President Ronald Reagan, former Congressmen Jack Kemp and Tony Hall, Chuck Colson, and the life of 10th century Member of Parliament William Wilberforce.
I want to thank the many excellent former and current members of my staff who have helped me serve the people of the 10th District. I am also grateful to my wife, Carolyn, and my family, who have faithfully stood by me all these many years.
Wolf’s decision to retire creates a big pickup opportunity for Democrats. Mitt Romney very narrowly won Wolf’s district in the 2012 election, with 50 percent voting for him over 49 percent voting for President Barack Obama, according to Roll Call.
Democrats see Fairfax County Supervisor John W. Foust as a strong candidate to take Wolf’s seat.
National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR) released a statement praising Wolf’s tenure in office, especially as a member of the House Appropriations Committee.
“Since being elected to serve the people of Virginia’s 10th District more than 30 years ago, Frank has been a loyal and hard-working member of the U.S. House of Representatives,” Walden said in the statement. “As a member of the influential House Appropriations Committee, and as Chairman of the Commerce-Justice-Science Subcommittee, Frank has had important jurisdiction over our nation’s security and justice departments, along with many government agencies dedicated to improving the lives of our citizens on a daily basis. Frank has always been willing to ask the tough questions and do whatever it takes to protect the security of the American people.”
This story was updated.