Republican congressman Mike Rogers announced Friday that he would not be seeking re-election in Michigian’s 8th District, trading his fourteen-year career in Congress for a talk radio show.
The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee said in a statement he is most proud of turning the committee “into a true legislative and oversight body.”
“But I have always believed in our Founders’ idea of a citizen legislature,” the former FBI agent continued. “I had a career before politics and always planned to have one after. The genius of our institutions is they are not dependent on the individual temporary occupants privileged to serve.”
During a morning radio tour in his home district, the congressman explained he would be joining Cumulus Media as host of a nationally-syndicated talk radio program. “”I saw this as an opportunity that was hard to pass up,” he told one local program. “To have a bigger platform and talk about things I care about.”
“Washington is an interesting place, but it seems it has ground to a halt in progress in some places,” he continued. “I thought if there was a way we could change the dialogue, is it better to do it where I’m at or is it better to try and find an opportunity that allows you to talk to a lot more people across the country?”
It’s not a complete surprise from the media-savvy congressman, who made frequent Sunday show appearances on the major cable networks defending America’s surveillance activities and blasting NSA leaker Edward Snowden. U.S. News reports that Rogers appeared 27 times on MSNBC in 2013, more than any other congressman.
But some had expected Rogers to quit the House this spring for another reason — to replace Democratic Michigan Senator Carl Levin, who declined to run for re-election this fall. With this move Rogers appears to have given up, at least temporarily, any aspirations for higher office.
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