Representative Grace Napolitano (D-CA) announced in a statement on Saturday that she will be retiring after her current term expires.
Stating that she was “incredibly grateful” to serve the people of Southern California, Napolitano is moving on after a quarter century in Congress.
Her statement read, "Thank you all so much for being here and this great honor. My focus has always been representing my district, first; state, second; and nation, third. We still have a year and a half more of work to do, and I will give 110% every day fighting for the San Gabriel Valley in the United States Congress. Thank you, all! God bless!"
House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) responded to the announcement saying, "Congresswoman Grace Napolitano is a trailblazer and a tremendous leader in our Caucus. Congresswoman Napolitano has left a remarkable legacy on both the San Gabriel Valley and the Congress and we wish her and her family the best as she prepares for this next chapter."
Considering Napolitano is the House's oldest member at 86 years old, her retirement was overdue.
With Napolitano moving on, a litany of Democrats have officially filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission to run for her seat.
State Senator Bob Archuleta (D-CA), Citrus Community College Trustee Mary Ann Lutz, and Baldwin Park Planning Commissioner Ricardo Vazques have all filed to run and its possible other candidates could jump in.
Unfortunately, her district is heavily Democrat-favored and there is little to no opportunity for Republicans to steal a seat.
Republicans will have to find another way to hang onto their majority in the House.
Napolitano was a senior member of the House Natural Resources Committee and the House Transportation and Infrastructure panel.
Going into 2024, Democrats have a lot of movement that could provide Republicans with opportunities as they seek to maintain their control of the House of Representatives.
Napolitano is the ninth House Democrat who is either retiring or running for some other office which will pose problems for Democrats in 2024.
In California alone, Napolitano is leaving alongside Democrat Representatives Adam Schiff, Katie Porter and Barbara Lee.
While many of those seats should remain safe, there is reason for Democrat leadership to be concerned going into 2024. It would be an uphill battle to take the majority even without all these retirements.