Henry A. Waxman’s surprise announcement that he’s leaving Congress means that four longtime California lawmakers are retiring from the House of Representatives. Two are Democrats, two Republicans. Combined, they served more than 100 years in the House. Here are quick looks at who they are and who might replace them:
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press
HENRY A. WAXMAN
City: Los Angeles
First elected: 1974
Known for: Liberal but pragmatic, with an extensive record of legislative victories, often involving the environment, consumer protection and healthcare. Spearheaded revisions of Clean Air Act, creating stronger standards to control smog and other pollutants. Shepherded the Tobacco Control Act, which gave the FDA power to regulate tobacco. Strong advocate of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act.
33rd District: Heavily Democratic. Stretches along coast from Malibu to Palos Verdes Peninsula, taking in Bel-Air, Santa Monica and Beverly Hills. About 62% of residents have bachelor’s degree or higher. Voted for President Obama in 2012. Population is 75.5% white, 12.4% Latino, 3.3% black. Median household income: $89,354.
Would-be successors: Expect a crowded and expensive contest. Former Los Angeles city controller and mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel declared her candidacy Thursday, the day Waxman announced his retirement. State Sen. Ted Lieu of Torrance jumped in Friday. Other Democratic contenders: Fran Pavley of Agoura Hills and Assemblyman Richard Bloom of Santa Monica, Secretary of State Debra Brown and radio show host Matt Miller. Many more are possible.
Quote: “At the end of this year, I would have been in Congress for 40 years. If there is a time for me to move on to another chapter in my life, I think this is the time to do it.”
Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times
First elected: 2005
Known for: Frequent critic of big spending. Attacked earmarks, even those proposed by fellow Republicans. Before Congress, served in California Assembly and state Senate.
45th District: Heavily Republican. Encompasses parts of central and south Orange County, including Irvine and parts of Anaheim, Orange and Mission Viejo. Voted for Mitt Romney in 2012. Fifty percent of residents have bachelor’s degree or higher. Population is 66.9% white, 21% Asian, 18.7% Latino, 1.4% black. Median household income: $89,383.