A Democratic member of the House Intelligence Committee is retiring from Congress, in part because he is tired from investigating President Donald Trump.
Rep. Denny Heck, D-Wash., made the announcement in a blog post on Medium.
"The countless hours I have spent in the investigation of Russian election interference and the impeachment inquiry have rendered my soul weary," the 67-year-old Heck wrote. "I will never understand how some of my colleagues, in many ways good people, could ignore or deny the president's unrelenting attack on a free press, his vicious character assassination of anyone who disagreed with him, and his demonstrably very distant relationship with the truth."
Heck served as a Washington state senator from 1977 to 1985. He was elected to the U.S. House in 2012 and wrote that he is retiring, although he did not make it clear whether he would serve out his current term, which runs through 2020, or depart his post before that.
Among Heck's reasons for stepping aside is a desire to spend more time with his wife — "At our age, however many 'good years' we have left together is not a growing number," he wrote. He also mentioned the discourse that has taken over the country in recent years.
"The truth is that civic discourse began degrading before [Trump]," he wrote. "At times, it is as though there are no rules or boundaries. Success seems to be measured by how many Twitter followers one has which are largely gained by saying increasingly outrageous things, the more personal the better. There are simply too many hyperbolic adjectives and too few nouns. Civility is out. Compromise is out. All or nothing is in."
As part of his work on the Intelligence Committee, Heck participated in the panel's investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 election. More recently, the committee spent several weeks on an impeachment inquiry over allegations that Trump used his office for personal political gain.
"It is incredible work but it takes its toll," Heck wrote.
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