Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) is retiring from Congress, according to multiple reports.
The San Joaquin Valley Sun, the local paper for Nunes’ district, reported that the congressman’s office had told constituents that he would depart Congress as soon as this month.
Trump Media and Technology Group – the parent company of social network TRUTH Social – issued a press release on Monday saying that Nunes would join as CEO.
“The United States of America made the dream of the Internet a reality and it will be an American company that restores the dream,” Nunes said in the statement.
TRUTH seems to be the fulfillment of Trump’s post-Twitter ban promise that he would create a network to rule them all. With Steve Bannon hitched to right-wing network GETTR and others linked to Parler and Gab, TRUTH has the distinction of both not yet existing and having Trump’s approval.
Nunes may have faced an uphill battle to re-election next year. California’s redistricting commission is drafting maps that, in their current iteration, could force him to run in a majority Biden district.
It’s a quick and fitting lateral move for Nunes, who defined his time as chair of the House Intelligence Committee by working as an attack dog for former President Trump. Nunes marshaled a series conspiracy theories to that end, running parallel investigations and probes into the investigators themselves as Special Counsel Robert Mueller examined Russian interference in the 2016 election.
During the first impeachment investigation into Trump’s effort to coerce the Ukrainian government into helping him win the 2020 election, Nunes played a similar role: running a parallel investigation into Hunter Biden. Democrats on the panel said in July 2020 that they had received a DHL receipt from a Ukrainian lawmaker addressed to Nunes’s office. The U.S. Treasury later sanctioned the Ukrainian lawmaker and called him an “active Russian agent.”
CNN reported that Nunes included talk of a vague opportunity in his letter to constituents, saying that he was leaving to follow a “new opportunity to fight for the most important issues I believe in.”
“I’m writing to let you know I’ve decided to pursue this opportunity, and therefore I will be leaving the House of Representatives at the end of 2021,” he wrote.
Nunes also made a name for himself outside of the halls of Congress by suing his many critics, including the owner of a Twitter-based farm animal.
In August, a Virginia judge dismissed a defamation suit that Nunes filed against Liz Mair, a Republican strategist who, Nunes alleged, played some role in a story about a California vineyard gone bad and in being mean to him on Twitter.
This post will be updated.