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DES MOINES, Iowa – Democrat U.S. Rep. Dave Loebsack of Iowa announced that he will retire at the end of the 116th Congress and not seek reelection in 2020 to represent Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District.

Loebsack, first elected in 2006 when he defeated Republican incumbent Jim Leach, will log 14 years in Congress at the end of his current term.

“I have enjoyed beyond my expectations serving the people of Iowa’s Second District for the past 13 years. Having grown up in poverty, I never would have imagined having the honor of serving as the voice of Iowans in the U.S. House of Representatives. To best achieve that, I made it a point to meet with folks where they live, work and play in order to focus on improving their lives. I have worked hard to ensure ALL Iowans have had their voice heard,” Loebsack said.

Loebsack said that he had planned to retire in 2018, but the election of Donald Trump to the presidency in 2016 spurred him on to run for another term to “provide a check on his worst impulses.”

“Currently, there are nearly two years remaining in this term and I look forward to playing an important role in the new House majority, not only to prevent further damage done by President but to also help set the stage for a new Democratic president to be inaugurated in January of 2021,” he stated.

Loebsack said that with the remainder of his term he will focus on the middle class and to provide more opportunities for people to move into the middle class.

“To that end, I will keep up my efforts to ensure access to affordable, quality healthcare for all; increase access to quality education at all levels to provide the opportunity to achieve; and expand access to quality broadband, especially in rural communities and for those who would be unable to achieve the American dream if they can’t receive the service they need,” he said.

“Finally, I will never forget our veterans. These men and women were willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for our nation and we must ensure that we care for them with the same dignity and honor with which they served,” he added.

While Loebsack’s retirement should make the district more competitive in 2020, Democrats still have a large voter registration advantage outnumbering Republicans by almost 22,000 registered voters at the beginning of April.

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