Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer of California says she will not seek re-election in 2016 to a fifth term in office. The 74-year-old Boxer made the announcement in a video with her grandson. She was first elected to the House in 1982 and then to the Senate one decade later. It was an election that marked a watershed year for women in politics, with four winning US Senate seats, including fellow Californian Dianne Feinstein. In the Senate, Boxer has been a staunch supporter of abortion rights, gun control, and environmental protections.
"Has the constant fighting in the Senate been a factor in your decision?" her grandson asks. "You know, when you stand up there and you fight to make sure there's a strong middle class, and you protect a woman's right to choose, and you fight for jobs and a clean environment, all those things—human rights, civil rights—that's a fight worth making, so that is not a factor in my decision," Boxer replies, adding that her age is also "definitely not" a factor, and that while she's leaving the Senate, she's not "retiring" and will continue working on the issues she's passionate about.