Political News

Senior GOP Rep. Gregg Harper to retire at end of term

Posted January 4, 2018 12:38 p.m. EST
Updated January 4, 2018 1:43 p.m. EST

— Rep. Gregg Harper, a Mississippi Republican and chair of the House Administration Committee, said Thursday that he will not seek re-election once his term ends in January 2019, the latest in a long string of senior GOP House members planning to leave Congress.

"We have been contemplating for almost two years when it would be our time not to run again, and after spending time over Christmas and New Year's with my family, we made the very difficult decision to say that 10 years will be long enough," Harper said in a statement. "I never intended for this to be a career, and it will soon be time for another conservative citizen legislator to represent us."

Harper became the 44th member of the current House -- including more than two dozen Republicans -- to announce that he will retire, campaign for other office or resign by the end of the current term. This means that more than one tenth of the chamber is planning to leave.

For Republicans, it's the sixth committee chair this cycle to retire or run for another office.

Harper is in his fifth term, and was an attorney and chairman of the Rankin County Republican Party before first being elected to Congress in 2008.

His seat in Mississippi's third congressional district is considered safely Republican and elected President Donald Trump by more than 20 percentage points.

Among other responsibilities, the Administration Committee is spearheading the House's response to how Congress is addressing complaints about sexual harassment and held hearings on the issue last year.