WASHINGTON — Reps. Ken Buck, R-Colo., and Kay Granger, R-Texas, said Wednesday that they won't seek re-election next year, announcements that come after their conference was embroiled in chaos for more than three weeks last month trying to elect a new speaker.
Buck, 64, has served in the House since 2015 and attributed his decision to retire from Congress in part to his party's reliance on former President Donald Trump's false claims that that the 2020 presidential election was stolen.
"I’ve decided, Andrea, I’m not going to seek re-election," Buck said in an interview on MSNBC's "Andrea Mitchell Reports."
He revealed his decision after Granger, the chairwoman of the powerful House Appropriations Committee, also announced that she will leave Congress.
"I’m joining Kay and probably some others in the near future, but I’ve decided that it is time for me to do some other things," Buck said. "I always have been disappointed with our inability in Congress to deal with major issues, and I’m also disappointed that the Republican Party continues to rely on this lie that the 2020 election was stolen and rely on the Jan. 6 narrative and political prisoners from Jan. 6 and other things."
He added, "If we’re going to solve difficult problems, we’ve got to deal with some very unpleasant truths or lies and make sure that we project to the public what the truth is."
Buck, who made clear he doesn't plan to leave the Republican Party, said the 2024 election will be "critical ... both at the presidential level and in the House."
Granger, 80, said in her statement Wednesday that she wants younger people to take up leadership positions in Washington.
"As I announce my decision to not seek re-election, I am encouraged by the next generation of leaders in my district," she said. "It’s time for the next generation to step up and take the mantle and be a strong and fierce representative for the people."
"Although I am not running for re-election, I plan to serve out the remainder of my term and work with our new Speaker and my colleagues to advance our conservative agenda and finish the job I was elected to do," Granger added.
Granger represents part of Fort Worth and its western suburbs, serving in the House since 1997. She previously served as mayor of Fort Worth.
Buck’s district covers the eastern portion of Colorado, east of Denver. Both represent safe Republican districts, according to Cook Political Report.
Both lawmakers were among the House Republicans who voted to certify Joe Biden's election in 2020, splitting from the 147 members of their conference who voted to overturn the results.
Buck was recently among eight Republicans who voted to oust Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., as speaker. He also opposed Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, in his bid for speaker. Granger was instrumental in blocking Jordan’s speaker bid as the only committee chairperson to repeatedly vote against him. She and a group of appropriators formed the core of the anti-Jordan bloc.