The other shoe has dropped — big-spending GOP Congressman Jerry Lewis has formally announced his retirement! (No, we didn’t get a release). Here is a story by ace DC reporter Ben Goad with the Riverside Press Enterprise. A few days ago the FlashReport put out an alert notifying readers that Lewis had been calling long-time supporters letting them know he was going to retire. The next day the Congressman’s press secretary denied it, saying that no decisions had been made by the Congressman. Yet, here we are, with the Congressman making his announcement at the end of the week, which is what he told to the supporters with whom we spoke under strict confidentiality.
We’ll be writing a lot more about why Lewis’ retirement is good for the Republican Party, and good for America. The bottom line is that Lewis spent the vast majority of his time in Congress lording over federal spending, pushing for egregious spending, and for earmarks that were so terrible that they are indefensible.
Look for the first political move as a result of this to be an announcement from U.S. Rep. Gary Miller, who represents a portion of the new 31st Congressional District in the Inland Empire where Lewis’ California home ended up after redistricting, to run in that seat, with just a ton of support from Washington, D.C. Miller was drawn into a seat with his colleague Congressman Ed Royce, and a massive Battle Royale has been shaping up. It is a top priority of Speaker Boehner and NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions to avoid this costly fight, and you can be sure Miller will leverage this when he moves over.
Also looking at the race is State Senator Bob Dutton, and the papers have said Congressman David Dreier is looking at it. It is unclear if these folks will still have interest if, as I predict, Miller jumps into that seat no-holds-barred.
Also now in play is the new 8th Congressional District which actually has a lot of the territory Lewis represents. Unlike CD 31 which will be competitive, the 8th is safe GOP territory. Already running was Greg Imus, former Chief of Staff to Assemblyman Tim Donnelly. Conservative San Bernardino County Supervisor Brad Mitzelfelt, who represents most of this district, has told me that he would run, and in fact has already announced his candidacy. Assemblyman Paul Cook has talked about running. And Ryan McEachron, Mayor of Victorville, is likely to be a candidate.
There are a lot of moving parts here, which we will follow. But the most-important take-away for now, is that Jerry Lewis’ retirement is great news for those who believe in liberty, freedom and in the reduction of egregious spending by Washington politicians.