McCarthy predicts more House Democratic retirements to come ahead of 2022 midterms

Posted 45 days ago


Amid the rise in the number of House Democrats not running for reelection in next year's midterms as their party tries to hold on to its fragile majority in the chamber, House GOP leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy is predicting there will be plenty more to come.

Long-serving Democratic Reps. David Price of North Carolina and Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania announced Monday they wouldn't seek reelection in 2022. Their news came just a few days after fellow Democrat and House Budget Committee chair Rep. John Yarmuth of Kentucky also said he’d retire from Congress after the end of his current term.

That brings to seven the number of House Democrats retiring rather than running for reelection in 2022, with another five seeking statewide or other offices rather than bidding for another two years in the House. And we’ve yet to hit the traditional peak season for congressional retirements.

The GOP needs a net gain of just five seats in the 435-member chamber next year to regain the House majority it lost to the Democrats in the 2018 midterms. Republicans have history on their side – on average the party that wins the White House in a presidential election loses more than 25 House seats in the ensuing midterm election. And the once-in-a-decade congressional redistricting process – which is underway – is expected to favor the GOP, as Republicans control more state legislatures and governors' offices.

With the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year holiday season fast approaching – when federal lawmakers on the fence about retiring take stock of their lives and discuss their futures as they gather with friends and family - McCarthy’s forecasting more House Democrats will announce their retirements in the coming months.

"Once you get past Thanksgiving and members go home, and they’re Democrats and they’ve been challenged before and they’re going to get beat up, Congress is not that great," the longtime GOP lawmaker from California told Fox News.

Pointing to the redistricting process, McCarthy argued during an interview in August "they’ve got new lines where they have to go meet new people and they’re still going to have the White House. They’re going to make a decision to retire, that’s the best time so they can go get another job. When we get that retirement number up higher, into double-digit figures, the whole thing becomes a different play."

Doyle, Price and Yarmuth all represent safe Democratic seats that right now aren’t expected to be competitive in next year’s midterms.

A veteran Democratic consultant cautioned against reading too much into the trio of retirement announcements over the past week.

"Not all retirements mean the same thing. These Democrat... (Read more)