(The Center Square) – A Republican Ohio congressman, and former Ohio State and NFL football player who voted to impeach President Donald Trump, has announced he will not seek reelection in 2022.
U.S. Rep. Anthony Gonzalez, who first took office in 2019, said his two children and the “toxic dynamics” inside the Republican Party were the reasons he won’t run again.
“While my desire to build a fuller family life is at the heart of my decision, it is also true that the current state of our politics, especially many of the toxic dynamics inside our own party, is a significant factor in my decisions,” Gonzalez said Thursday in a statement.
Gonzalez, who represents Ohio’s 16th Congressional District in northeast Ohio, would have faced Max Miller in next year’s primary. Miller, a former White House and Trump campaign aide, has been endorsed by Trump.
Gonzalez said Trump abandoned his duties during the Jan. 6 Capitol riot and was one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach the former president. He said he thought Trump helped organize and inflame the group that attacked the Capitol.
“The President of the United States helped organize and incite a mob that attacked the United States Congress in an attempt to prevent us from completing our solemn duties as prescribed by the Constitution,” Gonzalez said in January in a statement. “In doing so, five people have died – including a Capitol Police Officer – many more have been injured and our democracy has been shaken.
“The Vice President and both chambers of Congress had their lives put in grave danger as a result of the President’s actions in the events leading up to and on January 6. During the attack itself, the President abandoned his post while many members asked for help, thus further endangering all present. These are fundamental threats not just to people’s lives but to the very foundation of our Republic.”
The Ohio Republican Party censured Gonzalez in May for voting to impeach. It also passed a resolution asking him to resign.
Trump called Gonzalez’s impeachment vote stupid Friday and bid the congressman “good riddance.”
“RINO Congressman Anthony Gonzalez, who has poorly represented his district in the Great State of Ohio, has decided to quit after enduring a tremendous loss of popularity, of which he had little, since his ill-informed and otherwise very stupid impeachment vote against the sitting President of the United States, me,” Trump said in a statement. “This is no loss for Ohio or our Country. … Good riddance to Anthony, he can now get himself a job at ratings-dead CNN or MSDNC!”
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