Congressman Bill Owens today announced that he will not seek re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives this fall. Owens is the Democratic representative from New York's 21st District.
Owens has served in the House since 2009, when he won a special election for his district that took place after Congressman John McHugh took a position as Secretary of the Army. Owens won a subsequent election in 2010.
In a statement released today, Owens said that it is time for him to "undertake new endeavors and spend more time with [his] family." He also reassured his constituents that he would serve out the rest of his term advocating for jobs, the military, and a farm bill. The statement, in full:
“After careful thought and consideration, I have decided not to seek re-election for the 21st Congressional District this November. I have enjoyed the opportunity to travel the district, meeting and serving the families and business owners of this vast community. It has truly been a privilege to serve, and I plan on continuing to work for a brighter future for the region.
My appreciation for the support of my wife, children, grandchildren and close friends cannot be sufficiently expressed in words. There are others -- too numerous to list -- to whom I owe a great debt of gratitude. The remainder of my term will be spent in much the same way as the previous four years: assisting constituents with their individual concerns, continuing to focus on passing a Farm Bill, helping to create jobs in our communities, working for our troops and veterans, keeping the northern border secure and fluid and being a voice in Congress for bipartisanship, as well as fact-based decision making. You can count on me to work with and for you over the remainder of my term.
It is time for me to undertake new endeavors and spend more time with my family. Even though I will not seek re-election, it is my goal that the next phase of my life will continue to focus on helping to improve the lives of all New Yorkers, primarily through job creation and economic development.
Thank you for letting me serve you since November 2009.”
Owens' retirement announcement comes just one day after fellow U.S. Representative George Miller announced his retirement from congress. Miller was a long-serving Californian Democratic representative and the fifth most senior member of the U.S. House.