Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX) announced late Thursday night that he is stepping down from Congress.
“I have made the decision to not seek reelection for the 23rd Congressional District of Texas in order to pursue opportunities outside the halls of Congress to solve problems at the nexus between technology and national security,” Hurd said in a statement.
Hurd had a tough re-election campaign in the Democrat-held House ahead of him in 2020. His is one of only three districts Hillary Clinton won in 2016 that is still in Republican control. The three-term congressman was slated for a rematch with Democrat Gina Ortiz Jones, a veteran.
Hurd has been a rare vocal Republican critic of President Trump. In the past several weeks, he said publicly that the president’s tweets attacking four progressive congresswomen of color, Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), and Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), were “racist and xenophobic,” making him one of the few members of Trump’s party to criticize his remarks.
“Look, I’m the only black Republican in the House of Representatives. I go into communities that most Republicans don’t show up in order to take a conservative message,” he said at the time, adding, “This makes it harder in order to take our ideas, and our platform, to communities that don’t necessarily identify with the Republican Party.”
Hurd’s announcement comes as several Republican members of Congress recently announced they will not be seeking re-election. Reps. Mike Conaway and Pete Olson, both also in Texas, said they are stepping down, as well as Rep. Martha Roby in Alabama.