Just two months after handily defeating Sean Eldridge for his third term in Congress, Rep. Chris Gibson (R-NY) is set to announce his retirement according to multiple sources.
Why sources are referring to it as a retirement when he simply won’t seek re-election in 2016 may be a way of giving Republicans more time to find a replacement, in a district that is sure to land in the crosshairs of Democrats with his departure.
Via Roll Call:
Rep. Chris Gibson, R-N.Y., will announce his retirement Tuesday, according to two GOP sources.
The Republican, who was re-elected to a third term in November, will open a competitive seat in 2016 with his departure following this Congress. President Barack Obama carried the district with 52 percent, making it a must-win for House Democrats if they want to put a dent in the GOP’s historic majority this cycle.
Last year, Gibson annihilated venture capitalist Sean Eldridge, the Democratic nominee with deep pockets, by nearly 30 points.
One of the sources cited by Roll Call says Gibson has an eye in a statewide race in 2018. Whether or not factors into this decision is unclear.
Gibson is a retired Army colonel, having served in the First Gulf War, Kosovo, and Iraq. He has earned four Bronze Stars, two Legions of Merit, and one Purple Heart award during his career. He was a decorated war hero long before he became an accomplished congressman.