Monday, November 11, 2019

The Red Retirement Rush Resumes

The latest GOP Congressman to head for the hills, fleeing the disaster of Donald Trump's 2020 run is 28-year veteran Rep. Peter King of New York although there's a twist: he wants his daughter to fill the seat.

King, 75, said he was retiring so he can live full-time in New York and spend more time with his family. 
"This was not an easy decision. But there is a season for everything and Rosemary and I decided that, especially since we are both in good health, it is time to have the flexibility to spend more time with our children and grandchildren," he said, adding that his "daughter's recent move to North Carolina certainly accelerated my thinking." 
A source familiar with King's thinking told CNN on Monday that King "was really holding on" until his daughter, Erin King Sweeney, a former councilwoman in Hempstead, New York, "could run for his seat and win it." 
"Pete is really wonderfully into his kids and grandkids, and hated the idea of seeing them even less if he had to split his time between" DC, New York and North Carolina, the source said. 
King's retirement comes as his party inches closer to an election in which they could lose a number of vulnerable seats in the House, including his own. Earlier this year, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee said in a strategy memo that the New Yorker is "at the top of the retirement watch list" and included his district on a list of "targeted districts." 
Republicans have struggled in suburban districts during President Donald Trump's time in office, a trend recently on display last week in Virginia, where Democrats seized control of the state legislature. 
So far, 16 House Republicans and five Democrats have announced they won't seek reelection next year.

Thing is, Erin King Sweeney moved to NC six weeks ago, but if she's out of state, I guess King has decided he's moving on himself.  King's NY-2 Long Island district is definitely in play though for Democrats, with a Cook PVI of R+3. Without King's gravitational pull keeping this in the GOP column, this one's gonna fall to Team Blue in 2020.

Stay tuned.

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