Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) announced on Wednesday that he is retiring from Congress and will leave office by the end of the month. McCarthy’s surprise decision comes after he was ousted from the speakership in October.
“As the son of a firefighter from Bakersfield, my story is the story of America. For me, every moment came with a great deal of devotion and responsibility. Serving you in Congress and as the 55th Speaker of the House has been my greatest honor,” McCarthy said in a post on X, formerly Twitter.
McCarthy, who was first elected to the House of Representatives in 2006, wrote in an op-ed published in the Wall Street Journal that he was proud of what he accomplished over his 17 years in Congress.
“No matter the odds, or personal cost, we did the right thing. That may seem out of fashion in Washington these days, but delivering results for the American people is still celebrated across the country. It is in this spirit that I have decided to depart the House at the end of this year to serve America in new ways. I know my work is only getting started,” McCarthy wrote.
“I will continue to recruit our country’s best and brightest to run for elected office. The Republican Party is expanding every day, and I am committed to lending my experience to support the next generation of leaders,” he continued.
“I never could have imagined the journey when I first threw my hat into the ring. I go knowing I left it all on the field—as always, with a smile on my face. And looking back, I wouldn’t have had it any other way,” McCarthy added. “Only in America.”