Henry Waxman Calls It Quits

Loooong-time Calif. representative won't seek re-election

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 30, 2014 11:13 AM CST

(Newser) – California Rep. Henry Waxman will not run for re-election, he announced today, ending a House career that began way back in 1975. "Forty years have gone by very quickly," the LA Democrat tells the Washington Post. "I have a great deal of satisfaction with our legislative accomplishments. There's obviously more to be done, but I'm in good health, and my family is in good health. This is a good time to move on."

Waxman, 74, has been a driving force behind a host of landmark legislation, including the Clean Air Act and the Affordable Care Act. He also earned a reputation for his zealous investigations as House Oversight Chair, including hearings about tobacco industry marketing, steroids in sports, and the financial crisis. Fellow Californian George Miller—the only other remaining Democratic member elected in 1974, who is also retiring—once joked that Waxman's first name was "sonuvabitch," because legislators "kept asking, 'Do you know what that sonuvabitch Waxman wants now?'" the LA Times recalls.

 In this July 30, 2009 file photo Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif.,  chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee speaks during a hearing on  Capitol Hill.
In this July 30, 2009 file photo Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee speaks during a hearing on Capitol Hill.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)
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