Congressman Tom Graves, R-Ranger, announced Thursday morning that he will not seek re-election to his 14th District seat in 2020.

“As we all do, I’m entering a new season in life,” Graves said in a release. “So, the time has come for me to pass the baton. Now it’s my turn to cheer, support and sacrifice for those who have done the same for me over the last two decades.”

Graves cited family as the main reason for his decision.

“With Julie near retirement and my kids no suddenly adults, I have decided not to seek reelection in 2020, and instead, join my family in their new and unique journeys,” Graves said.

The six-term congressman is the 21st House Republican to announce his retirement, telling his constituents in conservative northwest Georgia that he's entering a new season in life and wants to spend time with his soon-to-retire wife Julie and adult children.

Graves, 49, has been a GOP loyalist throughout his tenure. He first entered the U.S. Congress in 2010, Graves won his last re-election bid in 2018 with 76% of the vote.

He is a senior member of the powerful Appropriations Committee and is the top Republican on a panel established by majority Democrats to reform the operations of Congress.

The 14th District includes the extreme northwest corner of Georgia, including Dade, Walker, Catoosa, Whitfield, Murray, Chattooga, Gordon, Floyd, Polk, Haralson, Paulding counties, as well as a section of Pickens county.

“Congressman Tom Graves has given so much to Georgia throughout his service in the Georgia General Assembly and in Congress," U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson said in a statement. "I have a tremendous amount of respect for Tom Graves. His rise in the U.S. House reflects his leadership and his commitment to serving others. He is one of a kind -- a great Georgian, a great American and a great representative of our state. I’ve been proud to stand with him to fight for Georgians and I’m proud to call him my friend.

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