Trump Impeacher Gonzalez Decides Not to Seek Re-Election
(Bloomberg) -- Representative Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio, one of 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Donald Trump, announced he would not seek re-election next year rather than face a primary challenge from an opponent endorsed by the former president.
Gonzalez, 36, cited the increasing responsibilities he and his wife, Elizabeth, face as parents to two children as well as turmoil within the Republican Party for his decision in a statement posted on Twitter.
“While my desire to build a fully family life is at the heart of my decision, it is also true that the current state of our politics, especially many of the toxic dynamics inside our own party, is a significant factor in my decision,” Gonzalez said in the statement.
Gonzalez described Trump as a “cancer for the country” in an interview with the New York Times, where he also faulted his House Republican colleagues for hewing close to the former president and said he worried about threats to his family.
The Ohio Representative added that most of his political energy would be spent on making sure Trump won’t be president again. He said in his statement that he hopes “the chaotic political environment that currently infects our country will only be temporary.”
Trump has endorsed former White House aide Max Miller to run against Gonzalez in the 2022 GOP primary and has vowed to defeat all the House Republicans who voted to impeach him after the deadly Jan. 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol.
“1 down, 9 to go!” Trump said in one of two statements on Friday. He also called Gonzalez’s impeachment vote “ill-informed and otherwise very stupid” and said “this is no loss for Ohio or our country.”
Gonzalez, a former Ohio State and Indianapolis Colts football player who’s in his second term, voted to impeach Trump over his role in encouraging supporters who marched on Capitol Hill and his response after the insurrection began. Soon after the House impeachment vote, Miller announced that he was running, saying Gonzalez betrayed the “America First” agenda.
Gonzalez has bemoaned Trump’s focus on the false claims the 2020 election was stolen from him that led to the violence on Jan. 6, saying it’s a “recipe for disaster” for the GOP and the country and won’t help Republicans win elections.
“As a party, frankly, we need to be on the side of truth, we need to be on the side of substance, and that’s how we’re going to win back majorities both in the House and the Senate and hopefully the White House in 2024,” Gonzalez said at a City Club of Cleveland forum on May 21.
Trump has endorsed challengers to three other House members who voted to impeach him, including Harriet Hageman against Wyoming Representative Liz Cheney, one of his staunchest Republican critics, and a candidate to oppose Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who voted to convict him after a trial.
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