Florida Congresswoman Stephanie Murphy (D-FL-7) announced she will not run for re-election to her current post in 2022, but has not ruled out running for different office down the line.
“When I left the Department of Defense, I knew then my time in public service wasn’t over. And I kind of feel the same way now,” Murphy said.
She expressed a desire to spend more time with her family.
“These last few years have been some of the most rewarding moments of my life, but also some of the most challenging,” Murphy said. “Public service is not without personal sacrifice, and as a mom of two young children, my time away from them has been hard. For them. For me. And for our family.”
Murphy was the co-chair of the Blue Dog Coalition, a group of congressional centrist and conservative Democrats, and was once considering running against Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R) next year.
“I think it’s hard for people in politics and especially in Washington to understand that someone at my age would quote unquote, retire … without having some sort of scandal or without fear of losing a reelection or without, immediately running for another position or job,” Murphy said. “But really, right now I need to be with my family.”
Murphy was also one of the few Florida Democrats to show hesitation to President Joe Biden’s (D) “Build Back Better” legislation. While she ended up voting with her party in support of the House legislation, she did vote “no” on numerous aspects of the social spending provisions while the bill was in committee deliberations.
She also has previously described herself as a “proud capitalist” as her family escaped communist-occupied Vietnam in the 1970s and worked with the then-President Donald Trump (R) administration in 2017 to pass bipartisan legislation supporting small business owners.
Earlier this year, Murphy also made waves within her own party by calling out House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA-12) for delaying a vote on the $1.2 billion infrastructure package back in October. Murphy said she was “profoundly disappointed and disillusioned.”
With her announcement, 21 other Democrats have announced they are retiring or are not seeking re-election next year, as Republicans will be seeking to take back both chambers of Congress.
In her own district, Murphy would have had to fend off Florida State Rep. Anthony Sabatini (R-FL-32) who referred to her as an “America-last, corrupt Democrat.” District 7 is currently one of the districts undergoing the re-districting process as a result of Florida gaining one congressional seat from the 2020 census.
The Florida Legislature is mulling two proposals: one which could give Republicans an advantage, and another that would make District 7 seemingly unchanged. Florida lawmakers will approve the final congressional boundaries during the 2022 Legislative Session beginning in January.
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Grant Holcomb is a reporter at the Florida Capital Star and the Star News Network. Follow Grant on Twitter and direct message tips.