Pennsylvania’s most well-known Republican is leaving Congress.
Senator Pat Toomey announced Monday that he is retiring to the private sector in 2022, setting the stage for an intense marquee fight in two years, Fox News reported.
Pat Toomey retiring
The Republican, who won his seat by less than 2 points in 2016, is the only Republican elected to statewide office in Pennsylvania who is not a judge. His retirement sets the stage for two marquee fights in 2022, with both his seat and the governorship up for grabs.
His decision came after he faced pressure to run for governor, with term-limited Democrat Tom Wolf forced to step down. He also expressed interest in the job in the past.
“I will not be running for reelection in 2022 and I will not be running for governor,” Toomey said. “I will serve out the remainder of my term.”
The Republican said that he is eager to move on to the private sector and have more time to spend at home after almost two decades in the Senate.
“Eighteen years is a long time,” he said. “And I’ve spent little time as I can in Washington … but it still ends up being a lot of time … away from home. And I’m looking forward to more time back at home.”
Toomey will support Trump
In the meantime, he says that he plans to “work as hard as I possibly can” in his remaining two years. And he will support President Donald Trump, with whom he has not always gotten along.
A moderate Republican and a free-market conservative, Toomey never quite saw eye to eye with Trump, whose protectionist trade policies have challenged party orthodoxy. He was also critical of Trump’s style and the drama that led to his impeachment.
“I decided early on I am not responsible for the president’s Twitter feed, I am not responsible for editing his comments in any given medium. I work with this president on a regular basis, it’s a very constructive relationship,” Toomey said. “When I’ve disagreed with him, which I have, I haven’t been bashful about saying so. But that has nothing to do with this decision.”
The state’s Republican party wished Toomey farewell.
“Unlike so many elected officials before him, Senator Toomey changed Washington D.C., not the other way around,” Lawrence Tabas, the chairman of the Pennsylvania Republican Party, said in a statement.