Fifth GOP House member from Texas says he won’t run for re-election this cycle

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Rep. Bill Flores, a Texas Republican, leaves the House Republican Conference meeting at the Capitol Hill Club in Washington in June 2018.

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GOP Rep. Bill Flores announced Wednesday his plans to retire from Congress at the end of his term, becoming the fifth Texas Republican to do so this election cycle.

Flores won his first election in 2010 by defeating a Democrat during President Barack Obama’s first midterm election and rose to become a chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee.

While Flores’ district between Dallas and Austin is now reliably Republican, Democrats have centered their efforts to expand their House majority by picking up several other seats in the suburbs of the Lone Star state. President Donald Trump won Flores’ district in 2016 with 56% of the vote.

In his retirement, Flores joins other high-profile GOP House members from the state including the ranking member of the House Agriculture Committee Mike Conaway and Will Hurd, the only black House Republican. Flores also marks at least a dozen GOP House lawmakers who’ve publicly announced plans not to seek reelection to their seats.

In a statement, Flores said that he will retire to spend more of his time with his family and planned to return to the private sector, where he had previously worked as an oil and gas executive. He said he would focus on a number of issues in his remaining time in Congress, including securing the border, removing “the uncertainty related to the ‘Dreamers,'” helping pass the United States, Mexico, Canada Agreement and paving the way for “the accelerated deployment of 5G technologies.”

He added that he’d like to teach his grandchildren how to fly and ski.

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