Another powerful House Republican announces he won’t seek re-election

The GOP effort to keep control of Congress suffered another setback when Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-N.J.) announced Monday he would not seek re-election. Frelinghuysen is the 40th Republican to announce plans to leave the House. As chairman of the powerful appropriations committee, he is among the most prominent to bow out ahead of what GOP strategists fear will be a painful fall election. “It’s an attention grabber,” said Thomas Reynolds, who ran the national campaign arm of House Republicans in 2004 and 2006. “Republicans will try to put some sort of a decent face on it but this was not good news for Republicans.” President Trump is expected to use his first State of the Union address on Tuesday night to boost vulnerable Republicans by calling for bipartisan cooperation on immigration and other issues.

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