Aug 1, 2019 - Politics & Policy

Will Hurd, the only black GOP representative, announces retirement

In this image, Hurd sits and listens during a hearing.

Hurd listens to testimony about 'deepfakes' on June 13, 2019. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Rep. Will Hurd (R-Tex.) announced on Thursday that he will not seek reelection in his swing district.

Why it matters: Hurd is the only black Republican in the House, and the third Texas Republican to retire this week. He has been known to occasionally criticize President Trump, most recently over the president's racist tweets against 4 Democratic congresswomen of color, per the Washington Post.

  • Hurd's former district includes 820 miles along the U.S.-Mexico border, making him the only GOP member of Congress to represent the southern border. He denounced Trump’s border wall proposition, describing it as a “third-century solution to a 21st-century problem,” according to the Post.

What's next: Hurd intends to move forward in his career to "solve problems at the nexus between technology and national security." He has been a longtime advocate of using technology to advance national security, including AI, quantum computing and cybersecurity.

  • Our thought bubble, per Axios' Joe Uchill: This leaves a gap in nuts and bolts tech understanding that the House already lacks.

His departure is the ninth by a Republican incumbent, heightening the stakes for the GOP to recapture control of the House in 2020.

Go deeper: Rep. Martha Roby won't seek re-election, as GOP faces dwindling number of women in the House

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