Darrell Issa - a reliable ally of President Trump - won't seek re-election this year, the OC Daily reported on Wednesday.
"Throughout my service, I worked hard and never lost sight of the people our government is supposed to serve", Issa said in a statement.
Issa is the 18th Republican member of the House to announce their retirement ahead of the 2018 elections, according to NBC News, while six Democrats have announced they are retiring.
"I am forever grateful to the people of San Diego, Orange and Riverside counties for their support and affording me the honor of serving them all these years", he said, adding he is especially humbled to have represented the residents of the U.S. Marine Corps base at Camp Pendleton.
Vista Republican Darrell Issa will not run for a 10th term in Congress, giving Democrats a much better chance of flipping a once reliable California Republican seat.
"I will continue advocating on behalf of the causes that are most important to me, advancing public policy where I believe I can make a true and lasting difference". In the 2016 election, Issa won by a margin of less than 1 percentage point.
Issa built a national profile as the chief congressional antagonist to Obama and his administration during his tenure as ranking member and then chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee between 2008 and 2015. Billionaire mega-donor Tom Steyer had dedicated $30 million to taking on Republicans in 2018, with Issa's wealthy southern California district as a key race. Hillary Clinton won the district by almost 7 points in the 2016 election. It wasn't immediately clear who might run as a Republican. "While Democrats fight with each other, Republicans will focus on fighting Democrats - and that's how we plan to win", Stivers said in a statement.
Issa became the second California Republican to retire this week.