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Wave of GOP Retirements Poised to Shake up House

Dozens of Republican House members have announced they will not run for reelection in the coming year, marking a 50-year high. Kwame Holman reports on who's retiring and what it may mean for Congress and the next president.

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  • JIM LEHRER:

    Now, a Republican exodus from the U.S. House of Representatives. NewsHour congressional correspondent Kwame Holman reports.

    REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R), Ohio, House minority leader: … for this and we will not stay for this. And I would ask my House Republican colleagues and those who believe that we should be here protecting the American people not vote on this bill. Let's just get up and leave.

  • KWAME HOLMAN:

    The point was one they've made often, that Democrats, who won control of the House 18 months ago, are making it impossible for Republicans to promote their legislative agenda. Louisiana Republican Jim McCrery fondly remembers the 12 years of Republican rule that ended in 2006.

    REP. JIM MCCRERY (R), La.: But in the House, the party that's in power, the party that's in majority rules this place lock, stock and barrel. They can do whatever they want.

  • KWAME HOLMAN:

    Life in the minority has been frustrating for McCrery. But what helped convince him to retire from the House next year after 10 terms over 21 years was his belief it's very unlikely Republicans can re-take the House in the fall election.

  • REP. JIM MCCRERY:

    To say that there's no hope I think would be an exaggeration. There is some hope. Clearly, the overall political landscape appears to be tilting Democratic right now.

  • KWAME HOLMAN:

    He is not alone.

    There's an election coming up in November that could put your party back into power, could it not?

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