Florida Rep. Ted Deutch announced on Monday he will not seek reelection in November, the latest in a string of Democratic members of Congress who have decided to retire or seek another office in a challenging political environment.
Deutch has represented Fort Lauderdale since winning his first election in 2010. He will resign from office this fall to serve as the next Chief Executive Officer of the American Jewish Committee.
Deutch, the chairman of the House Ethics Committee and member of the Foreign Affairs and Judiciary committees, became an outspoken advocate for gun control measures following the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in his district.
“Our community was profoundly changed on February 14, 2018,” said Deutch in a statement. “Seventeen students and teachers of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School were killed that day, and I have tried every day since to be there for their families and to help them honor the memories of their loved ones in all the ways they are working to make our schools and community safer.”
“I have also tried to support the survivors in any way I can, though it is their powerful voices that have helped create desperately needed change,” he added. “The Parkland families and student survivors inspire me every day.”
Deutch also noted his work trying to secure Iran hostage Robert Levinson, a former FBI agent, and grieving the news of his passing in 2020 alongside his family. “I have been forever changed by serving the people of Broward and Palm Beach Counties in Congress,” said Deutch.
Already 30 House Democrats have decided to retire or seek higher office rather than run for reelection in 2022. While not all of those members serve competitive districts, the exodus is a sign that Democrats are not confident of holding the House majority after November’s midterm elections.