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Why are so many Republicans leaving Congress? My theory: soul-crushing chagrin and shame

Rep. Greg Walden
REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Republican Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon announced on Monday that he will not seek reelection.

Leaving aside the four Democrats and three Republicans who are giving up their seats in the U.S. House to seek other offices, 19 members of the U.S. House have announced that they will not seek another term next year when seats come up. Of those, 15 are Republicans, four are Democrats.

Of course, politicians do retire for various reasons. And of course the next election is still a year away. So some more retirement announcements may come, and perhaps the partisan ratio will change. And you could note that it’s less fun to be in the House when your party has lost majority control, as Republicans did in 2018.

But that 15-4 partisan ratio of retirements looks a tad — hmm — suspicious. Almost four times as many House Republicans as Democrats are retiring without seeking another office.


On the Senate side, four Republican senators whose terms are up next year have decided to leave their jobs without seeking any other office, while just one Democrat is doing so.

I often wonder, and I don’t claim to know, what sort of combination of party loyalty, fear of losing a primary if they deviate from the Trump line, sincere conviction that Trump’s agenda is what is needed to make America great (again), tribalism, and (your reason here) explains the general solidarity of Republican elected officialdom around Trump, especially given his many deviations from what used to be Republican orthodoxy and, of course, character flaws and obnoxious behavior.

My theory, you won’t be terribly surprised to learn, is that these high Republican retirement numbers are about Trump and the soul-crushing chagrin and shame among Republican members of Congress over having to go along with his antics and other depredations, having to ignore or even defend his transparent lies, and to pretend that they are fully on board with the many ways he is damaging both the nature and the reputation of the “party of Lincoln.”

Sir Thomas (“A Man for All Seasons”) More gave up his head for refusing to go along with King Henry VIII’s decision to repudiate Catholicism so he could dump his wife.

These guys are just giving up their congressional sinecures.

Being Jewish and agnostic, my command of New Testament verses is weak, but I looked up this famous New Testament quote so I could quote it correctly: “For what doth it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his own soul?”

(By the way, none of the three Republicans in the Minnesota congressional delegation has  joined the retirement list, and all appear to be preparing to seek another term. All three scored above 90 percent in the portion of their votes that agreed with Trump’s position, according to these ratings by fivethirtyeight.com.)

Comments (55)

  1. Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 10/30/2019 - 09:21 am.

    Maybe…or maybe they just realize, the Republican party is evolving to be the party of working people, small business and the rural, and their elitist, centralizing economics no longer stand?

    Too bad so many establishment Dems are so very shameless, for eternal war, corporations, banks and billionaires.

    • Submitted by James Hamilton on 10/30/2019 - 10:46 am.

      That’s an interesting universe you inhabit, Mr.Duncan. While both major parties in mine can be accused of warlike tendencies and a surfeit of billionaires, not to mention a willingness to control how people live (albeit in different ways), I can’t bring to mind a single Republican effort in my almost seven decades or the last three years in which the interests of working people, truly small businesses (e.g., farmers), or rural America as a whole were at the forefront.

    • Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 10/30/2019 - 10:57 am.

      Based on the tax cut I’d say the Republicans are still the party of billionaires. Based on his speeches and the actions of his followers I’d say the Republicans are the party of racism and xenophobia. You can pretty that up and call it working people and the rural but most of us see the hate at those rallies and the corruption in this administration.

    • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 10/30/2019 - 10:59 am.

      Seriously though, whatever the bloviator-in-chief says (and the Republicans bow to), what actions would you say the Republican party has done to further the interests of working people, small business and rural folks, and please tell me how the Republican party and Trump are dismantling and decentralizing the elitist economy?

      I suspect you are smart enough to know better.

    • Submitted by Scott Walters on 10/30/2019 - 11:18 am.

      Maybe they should change their name…to the labor-farmer-socialist party. That would be much more accurate in meeting the needs of the groups you’ve described. What are rural areas without massive subsidies from their urban supporters? Vacant and destitute. Where is labor without strong union support? Well, just look around. And entrepreneurs without infrastructure, both digital and physical? Never even started.

    • Submitted by Pat Terry on 10/30/2019 - 03:01 pm.

      I don’t understand a single word of that comment.

    • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 10/31/2019 - 07:33 am.

      I did qualify my statement with a maybe.

      As it stands, neither party seems to care about working people. But the Dems seem to be all about global trade agreements, which pit working class people here against working class people in developing countries, and all about mass immigration to kickstart another round of reduction in labor costs, ie forced competition for the lower classes.

      Trumpism, at least economically, is a radical departure from neoliberalism since Reagan. These trade disputes, contrary to the corporate media narrative, portend a deliberate reduction in the value of the dollar, which makes export more attractive and could kickstart manufacturing/production here. Trumpism also represents a last hoorah in exploitation of resources, which could protend another boom domestically.

      Of course that is transitory, as is the globalism of the Dems, as an oil shock is coming sometime mid 2020’s, which is going to evaporate the Dem Renewables dream, as well as the equally delusional American Energy Independence meme.

      • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 10/31/2019 - 05:29 pm.

        Mmm, I’d say the GOP is all in on free trade, the corporate centrist Dems are all in, & the progressive Dems have never been for free trade agreements.

        While Don Trump’s rhetoric was anti-NAFTA, all he’s done is to negotiate a slightly worse agreement while giving it a new name.

        One reason the centrist Dems are freaking out about Warren & Sanders is that they don’t want to see someone negotiate agreements with real, enforceable labor & environmental standards.

        So no, not all Dems are unwilling to lift a finger for working people. Too many, but not all.

    • Submitted by Henry Johnson on 10/31/2019 - 10:15 pm.

      Wow – the Trump-publican party, lead by rich, trash-talking New Yorker Donald Trump, who’s only legislative accomplishment in 3 years is a tax cut that primary benefits the wealthy and corporations, with only minor cuts that expire in 2025 for everyone else, is somehow in your mind a champion for ‘working people’, small business, and rural people, and the democrats are champions for bankers and corporations?

      LOL, I’m sorry, but that’s truly some wildly delusional nonsense!

      Bankers and big corporations have far too much influence on both major parties IMO, but I’d say of the two, Republicans are more under their sway, and for decades Democrats have been the ones generally looking out more often for working people.

      I say that as an independent who’s not a big fan of either major party, BTW, but that’s my observation over the years.

      As for small businesses, ask the thousands of small businesses that lost their shirts when DJT declared bankruptcy multiple times, and left them holding unpaid invoices for their work on his properties, if he’s a champion for small business.

      It”s true DJT has convinced quite a few people he is looking out for the little guy, but fooling people about something is far different than actually doing something, and the only people that he and the Trump-publicans have come thru for in a big way with real legislation are the wealthy like he and his family, and the big corporations that you are railing against.

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 11/01/2019 - 09:36 am.

        Henry,

        What I said was, the Republican party is evolving to be about working people, small business and the rural. You are right to say Trump is a fake-populist. He has however changed the focus of conservatism to be more about rebuilding America’s productive capacity. That is the basis of Trump’s trade disputes, to reduce the trade deficit, but also to devalue the dollar, which would make production here and export more viable.

        My point too is that there is a vacuum left by Dem abandonment of working people to the forces of globalization and monopoly. Say what you want about repub tax cuts…but the economic policies of Clinton and Obama had as much or more to do with stagnant and declining wages, collapsing benefits and epic income inequality. Clinton passed NAFTA, deregulated the banks and media, and Obama had an opportunity to reset the system but instead he handed the keys of the kingdom to Banks and Private Equity.

        Trump saw that vacuum, and he is driving the Republican party through it. How that changes the party remains a question.

        • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 11/01/2019 - 02:44 pm.

          Which. is why the wage gap between the top 1% and the rest of us is increasing.

        • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 11/02/2019 - 03:52 pm.

          Yes, Don Trump Is rhetorically capitalizing on the void left by corporate Dems, the same Dems in a dither about Warren & Sanders.

          But Don Trump is doubling down on the same policies pushed by the corporate Dems. He is doing nothing for working families.

          In contrast, there are a number of Blue states that have enacted legislation to strengthen unions & expand the right to vote. This is in stark contrast to a GOP that is still bent on voter de-form that penalizes low income people.

  2. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 10/30/2019 - 09:44 am.

    Shame on those three Minnesota Republicans in the House for their lopsided support of the most bigoted and self-aggrandizing President we’ve had in the past century, and I can only hope that Eric is correct about the “soul-crushing chagrin and shame” of the House Republicans who ARE retiring. I use the word “hope” advisedly, as neither chagrin nor shame appear to be part of the character of Republican loyalists in recent years, whether in Congress or in the Minnesota legislature.

  3. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 10/30/2019 - 10:34 am.

    Trumpism is the inevitable culmination of where the Republican Party has been headed for decades. It’s curious that these members of Congress should develop a conscience just as impeachment proceedings (an inquiry supported by a majority of voters) get underway. They were perfectly willing to tolerate the general disregard for American political norms and the standards of common decency as long as it meant not being primaried from the right. Now that things are getting uncomfortable for them, they are leaving Congress, most likely for soft landings on top of lucrative “consulting” engagements.

    When the going gets tough, the tough retire and head for K Street.

    • Submitted by Tim Smith on 10/30/2019 - 11:44 am.

      How about those American political/medica norms? Real effective for those who embraced swamp norms to get rich.

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 10/30/2019 - 04:46 pm.

        That makes no sense, even when you leave aside the irony of a Trump supporter getting on a high horse about people getting rich off government. Sneering about that practice should not be in the repertoire of a backer of a President who dismisses the Emoluments Clause as “phony.” Trump has not “drained the swamp,” unless by “draining” you mean “putting industry lobbyists in charge of the agencies regulating them,” or “putting the most incompetent, yet pliant, people I can find in charge of government.”

        I’m referring to adherence to the norms of constitutional government. Those include a due regard for the separation of powers, an understanding of the limits of executive power (birthright citizenship cannot be stopped by executive order), and acknowledgement that opposition is a legitimate form of expression in a democracy. One might also expect a respect for the rule of law, even when it limits one’s own actions, or means that one’s opponents cannot be prosecuted just for being opponents.

        Given the state of the modern Republican Party, it may be too much to expect any interest in moral leadership for the world, an American aspiration that predates independence. That “city upon a hill” wasn’t referring to a gaudy golf resort.

  4. Submitted by Tim Smith on 10/30/2019 - 10:47 am.

    Many leave because their districts have gone from red to purple or blue. Many I would think because it is no fun to be minority to the soul crushing impeachement obsessed left wing house where nothing meaningful will get done for the electorate for quite some time.

    • Submitted by Jonathan Ecklund on 10/30/2019 - 11:56 am.

      Below is a list of the Republican congressional retirements only, plus their vote percentages in the 2016 presidential election (Not congresspersons seeking higher office). Only *one* was in a district Clinton carried, not ‘many’ as you say.
      The next closest is one with a Trump win of 6.2 points. If the districts are ‘purpling’ to the point where a 6 point partisan lean (or above!) means the GOPer gets wiped out, that’s the fault of Trump and Trumpism. And frankly, if you don’t want to represent your district because it has people in that you don’t agree with politically, then you have no business being there in the first place.

      Will Hurd, Texas’s 23rd Congressional District:
      2016 presidential election: +3.4 Clinton

      Greg Walden, Oregon’s Second Congressional District:
      2016 presidential election: +20.1 Trump

      James Sensenbrenner, Wisconsin’s Fifth Congressional District:
      2016 presidential election: +20.1 Trump

      Susan Brooks, Indiana’s Fifth Congressional District:
      2016 presidential election: +11.8 Trump

      Martha Roby, Alabama’s Second Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +31.9 Trump

      Sean Duffy, Wisconsin’s Seventh Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +20.4 Trump (retired due to family issues)

      John Shimkus, Illinois’s 15th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +46.2 Trump

      Bill Flores, Texas’s 17th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +17.5 Trump

      Rob Woodall, Georgia’s Seventh Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +6.3 Trump

      Paul Mitchell, Michigan’s 10th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +32.2 Trump

      Pete Olson, Texas’s 22nd Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +7.9 Trump

      Kenny Marchant, Texas’s 24th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +6.2 Trump

      Mike Conaway, Texas’s 11th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +58.7 Trump

      Rob Bishop, Utah’s First Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +27.3 Trump

      Mac Thornberry, Texas’s 13th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +63 Trump

      Chris Collins, New York’s 27th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +24.5 Trump (this guy retired because he had to plead guilty to federal insider trading charges WHILE AT THE WHITE HOUSE)

      Francis Rooney, Florida’s 19th Congressional District
      2016 presidential election: +22.1 Trump

      https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2019/10/retirement-congress-2020-hurd-alexander/596965/

    • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 10/30/2019 - 12:22 pm.

      I have not been keeping notes, but I know many of them are from fairly to solidly red districts. Four are from Texas, & the GOP has that state pretty well gerrymandered.

    • Submitted by Brian Simon on 10/30/2019 - 12:23 pm.

      LOL. While the House certainly has been holding hearings investigating the high crimes & misdemeanors of the Trump administration, they’ve also been busy passing legislation that’s never taken up in the Senate. Whatcha gonna do? Can’t make McConnell hold votes that are awkward for his caucus…

    • Submitted by Eric Snyder on 10/30/2019 - 01:25 pm.

      It’s a common talking point in conservative media that the Democrats aren’t doing anything. There are two fatal problems with that claim.

      The first is that Democrats have passed many bills: https://www.vox.com/2019/5/24/18637163/trump-pelosi-democrats-bills-congress

      The second is that the House can’t pass bills into law by itself. It needs the Senate to pass bills as well, but the GOP is largely refusing to take up the House’s bills.

      • Submitted by Tom Anderson on 10/30/2019 - 10:48 pm.

        Thankfully, the House passed and the Senate passed the spending bills (all spending starts with the House) which have contributed to the Federal deficit and national debt. Truly bi-partisan efforts.

    • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 10/30/2019 - 03:18 pm.

      It bears repeating, so Republicans can know we’re paying attention: the Democratic-majority House of Representatives has passed, since the beginning of 2019 when their majority began, a whole slew of wonderfully progressive legislation, from gun control and climate change issues and from there to a whole slew of other bills.

      Problem is, all those bills go to die a sad and permanent death in “Moscow Mitch” McConnell’s Senate. McConnell won’t even assign those House bills to a committee, much less permit them to be brought up for discussion and vote in the whole Senate.

      We’re tired of being blamed for Republicans’ dysfunction in Congress.

      And we’re tired of Republican corruption: “Moscow Mitch”‘s wife has a gigantic familial business conflict of interest and Mitch himself is trying to get federal favors for a Russian oligarch who has just set up a multi-billion dollar business in McConnell’s state, Kentucky. Quid pro quo, anybody?

      • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 10/31/2019 - 09:34 am.

        These bills only suffer “permanent” deaths until progressives take the Senate away from Republicans. The NEXT time Democrats have full control they need to move beyond their “moderate” comfort zone and pass necessary and common sense legislation that should have gone on the books decades ago. We can talk about all the progressive bills that have passed in the house, but the fact is most of them would have died in a Democratic senate as well given the hostility towards them we still see today.

        • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 10/31/2019 - 05:34 pm.

          Which is why we need to get rid of the filibuster. If the US Senate has 5 progressives & the filibuster, it’s not better than having zero progressives.

          • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 11/01/2019 - 11:32 am.

            Well, the filibuster isn’t some kind of problem only if progressives use it.

          • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 11/04/2019 - 10:57 am.

            I don’t think there has ever been a use of the filibuster (Aaron Burr’s legacy) to do anything other than stop progressive legislation. It has never been used to stop the roll-back of, for example, pro-worker legislation.

  5. Submitted by James Hamilton on 10/30/2019 - 10:52 am.

    A fairly obvious place to look is recent electoral results in the districts of those declining to run for re-election, in either party. One might also have looked to the state of their campaign funds in the months leading up to their announcements.

    I’m having a great deal of trouble imagining any of the Republicans having traveled the road to Damascus in recent months, after years of partisan obedience and mindless opposition to all things Obama and/or Democratic.

    I wonder, are any of those retiring among the many who spoke out against Trump and then came to heel?

  6. Submitted by Hiram Foster on 10/30/2019 - 11:42 am.

    It’s a question of positioning themselves for cushy post congress lobbying jobs. Can an ex congressman be an effective lobbyist in post Trump Washington if he was too closely associated with Trump? My question isn’t rhetorical,

    By the way, it’s no fun to be in the minority in Congress. Potted plants have more influence on policy.

  7. Submitted by Howard Schneider on 10/30/2019 - 12:14 pm.

    The Republican-Democratic retirement disparity is more pronounced when presented as a percentage of current membership:

    Republicans: 15/197 = 7.6%
    Democrats: 4/234 = 1.7%

  8. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 10/30/2019 - 12:31 pm.

    You know what would be the best political outcome for the Democratic party when the impeachment trial is held in the Senate?

    Massive mobilization of anti-Republican sentiment when the Republican senators toss the impeachment process to the curb.

    This is the problem for the Republican senators–the need to respect the process and charges, acknowledge the Constitutional seriousness of the charges, present a coherent response, all the while being led by a wild-card that they have been subservient to for years.

    It’s hard to see how the Constitution or party, one or the other, will not end up terribly damaged.

  9. Submitted by Peter Pesheck on 10/30/2019 - 01:25 pm.

    It’s not a very inspiring picture…

    if our fine patriotic congress”men”, pro-business, pro-life, pro-gun, we love AMERICA and the TROOPS…

    if these GOP folks can’t deal with DJT and his minions any longer and can only summon the courage to retire and walk away quietly.

    I guess getting a warm reception at the country club is more important than standing up, speaking up to save our country.

  10. Submitted by Pat Terry on 10/30/2019 - 03:04 pm.

    A lot of it has to do with shifting voting patterns, with suburbs becoming more Democratic and rural areas becoming more Republican. And with Trump, the Republicans are no longer selling fiscal responsibility, but instead focus on fear and bigotry.

  11. Submitted by Carl Brookins on 10/30/2019 - 04:34 pm.

    Amazed at some of these responses to an interesting analysis. I happen to agree with the writer; that more and more Republicans are unwilling to continue to support the current president and his party. I am also surprised at the numbers of Minnesotans who seem to have bought the fiction that democrats and liberals are all bad all the time. In my view as one raised Republican who became a Democrat and then realized that both parties are more interested in winning at all costs than they are in doing what is necessary to improve the nation and the world, so I became independent. I say, support candidates of whom you approve and work to defeat those of whom you disapprove. ABOVE ALL, encourage ethical government.

    • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 10/31/2019 - 12:16 pm.

      The thought that comes to mind with your comment “encourage ethical government” suggests: “Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

      .

  12. Submitted by Connor OKeefe on 10/30/2019 - 06:56 pm.

    During his next term, Trump is going to need men and women who are committed to completing the much needed work at the Southern border, overhauling our immigration system so that it works with the best interests of America as a focus.

    Also, we see that there is much culling and replacing that needs to be done within the ranks of the federal workforce. We have way to many career bureaucrats that put their political views ahead of the best interests of the country.

    I applaud these folks for making room for the energetic, conservative leaders we need.

    • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 10/31/2019 - 05:42 pm.

      So they will be replaced by conservatives? Like, people who will stem the rising tide of red ink in the wake of the Don Trump Tax Cuts & Corporate Welfare act?

    • Submitted by Kate Brown on 11/05/2019 - 11:22 am.

      I think we’ve seen pretty clearly what Trump’s second term (god forbid) would be like. He’d continue to install his business cronies to dismantle the agencies that are tasked with holding them to account, would seek any and all means to further enrich himself, and continue to vilify anyone who speaks against him. I’ve seen absolutely nothing to suggest things would change. But I’m hopeful we won’t have to put that to the test & he’ll either be removed or roundly voted out.

  13. Submitted by Chas Dalseide on 10/30/2019 - 07:23 pm.

    I wonder if any of them have a nepotism problem? Remember how some had to quit after the Clinton impeachment problem?

    Perhaps they are positioning themselves to form a 3rd Party movement.

  14. Submitted by Tom Christensen on 10/31/2019 - 08:24 am.

    Once they can no longer be primaried, the GOP cowards in congress will turn into a dominos game of those unwilling to defend the indefensible actions of Trump. Daily, Trump makes his defenders look pathetically weak and stupid. Trump has turned the entire GOP into a toxic mess of worthless chaos.

    The only truth the public gets from the GOP comes from those retiring or not running again. Politicians are elected to run the country, not run from the country. Good riddance to those retiring or choosing not to run again. The GOP blames the democrats’ for inaction. The GOP had total control of the government, House, Senate, and White House, for two years and couldn’t accomplish anything for all of America. In Trump’s word, SAD.

    Just as toxic and corrupt as Trump is McConnell who has turned the Senate into a worthless branch of government. McConnell knows the art of doublespeak, talking without saying anything.

  15. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 10/31/2019 - 08:43 am.

    Well, this is a nice attempt to characterize some Republicans with a certain degree of integrity, and in some cases it may be true… but that doesn’t explain all of the Party line votes ALL of these guys have been delivering for extremist resolutions and legislation for almost 20 years.

    If these guys are so ashamed of their Party, why don’t they say so and vote accordingly? Cowardice would be one explanation, but it’s hard to credit a bunch of cowards with a sense of integrity.

    Listen: Eric may be constructing a nostalgic tale of bipartisan Republicans from days gone by, but the obvious fact is that if these guys are what Eric claims them to be, they would have long since crossed Party lines (isn’t that what “bi-partisans do?) and held Trump accountable. You don’t lock step with Fascists and then take credit for having a sense of shame.

    I don’t think Paul Ryan dropped out because he was shamed out of office, more likely some of these politicians simply see the writing on the wall and know their Party is going to crash. Get out while the getting is good. In the meantime it will take years of not decades to undue the damage these guys have done.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 10/31/2019 - 10:01 am.

      There is nothing that Trump is doing that is outside of the mainstream of Republican ideology for the last four decades. Their real objection to him is his personal style which, ironically enough, happens to be the major part of his appeal for his supporters.

      Trump is just the Republican Party’s id.

  16. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 10/31/2019 - 09:25 am.

    Just to expand a tad on my suggestion that Eric’s attempt to warrant these Republicans with a sense of shame and conscience is somewhat askew:

    This kind of mental acrobatics may be an example of the process that has driven the political landscape into the realm of reactionaries and Fascists. One of the basic charges against “moderates” and “centrists” over the years is they practice a form of denial, i.e. refusing to acknowledge the truly toxic nature of the Republican agenda and those who support it. Combine that denial with the practice of reaching “across the isle” and you have a regime that has rolled back everything from desegregation to women’s rights.

    Note for instance, that despite their toxic and reprehensible history of Party line votes and support for extremist agenda’s, and their silence in the face of criminal corruption, Eric goes out of his way to salvage their integrity by claiming that shame and conscience are driving them out of office. Meanwhile Democrats like AOC and Omar earn the distinction of being “leftists” who seek to push the political landscape too far to the “left”.

    This decades long practice of minimizing and denying “right wing” extremism while denouncing New Deal liberalism as “leftist” extremism pushed us so far the right that a president like Donald Trump became possible. Paul Ryan is just decent folk who can’t take it anymore, but Omar is a dangerous “leftist” who needs to dial back her extremism. This has the practical effect of normalizing right wing extremism while condemning common sense liberalism. And so it goes.

  17. Submitted by Rachel Kahler on 10/31/2019 - 10:26 am.

    I have an alternative theory: they’ve been ordered to leave, maybe by blackmail. They were given a choice–get out, or else. They will be replaced with people that are even more extremist.

  18. Submitted by Howard Schneider on 10/31/2019 - 03:27 pm.

    The retirement disparity is more pronounced when calculated as a percent of total representatives by party:

    Republicans 15/197 = 7.6%
    Democrats 4/234 = 1.7%

  19. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 11/04/2019 - 03:00 pm.

    “At least I admit Trump’s personality flaws. But I realize its preferable”…. . Apparently we have totally different value sets when it comes to ethics morality, patriotism, democracy, leadership, self serving, etc..Seems Trump is dismantling our democracy, our governemnt, our political system, our law enforcement, our farmers, destroying our environment. And I don’t agree that either Sanders or Warren will dismantle our economy, not like Trump running $1T+ deficits during the best of times and robbing the treasury for a $1.5T to give to the richest of the rich. Neither of those are sound economic policy. Perhaps you could support the dismantle and destroy. .

  20. Submitted by Steve Roth on 11/06/2019 - 12:44 pm.

    I like to think its out of shame, but that would require some integrity. Given that the GOP folks retiring haven’t come close to putting the good of the country ahead of party and warped ideology, clearly integrity has been in short supply.

    Perhaps it really comes down to simpler, personal reasons: they’re tired of hearing from their spouses and friends, realizing they’re becoming pariahs supporting a historically inept and dangerous president. Perhaps many realize they want to leave some sort of legacy for their kids and grandkids who will ask, “what did you do…” I often wonder how they sleep at night.

    Ultimately, it all comes down to one, over-arching reason: they’re cowards.

  21. Submitted by Matt Haas on 10/31/2019 - 04:45 pm.

    Nah, Trump is you and you are Trump. What I can’t figure out is the rationale for attempting to appear respectable. Your own are already in the tank, and the rest of us normal folks will have nothing to do with you, ever again. Who is it that the non-rabid believers are attempting to impress?

  22. Submitted by cory johnson on 11/03/2019 - 07:53 am.

    You can’t possibly believe you represent the mainstream, majority thought process of this country. At least I admit Trump’s personality flaws. But I realize its preferable to the plans of Sanders and Warren to dismantle our economy and destroy the careers of millions of people who actually contribute to society.

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