Congresswoman Jackie Speier Will Not Seek Re-Election

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) announced on Tuesday that she would not run for re-election, a decision that ends the congressional career of one of the House’s leading women’s rights champions.

“It’s time for me to come home. Time for me to be more than a weekend wife, mother and friend,” the California Democrat said in a video announcing her decision to leave Congress.

Speier has served California’s 14th District of San Mateo County and the Peninsula since 2013, as well as the 12th District of San Francisco from 2008 to 2013. But her career really starts far before then.

Exactly 43 years ago this week, Speier survived being shot five times as part of the 1978 Jonestown massacre in the country of Guyana. She was serving as an aide to Congressman Leo Ryan, who was assassinated — one of 909 people who died at the settlement.

“Forty-three years ago this week, I was lying on an airstrip in the jungles of Guyana with five bullet holes in my body. I vowed that if I survived, I would dedicate my life to public service. I lived, and I survived,” she said in her announcement video.

They were on a fact-finding mission to investigate claims of human rights abuses by Jim Jones and followers of his San Francisco-based cult.

“Since Day One, Congresswoman Jackie Speier has been a force in the fight to combat sexual assault and harassment in all places, from our Armed Forces to college campuses to the Congress,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday.

Speier is the latest of about a dozen veteran Democratic lawmakers who have announced they would not seek re-election after their current terms.

Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy announced his retirement on Monday.



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