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U.S. Rep. Kinzinger stops re-election bid

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U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Channahon) announced Friday, Oct. 29, that he was stopping his re-election bid.

In the redistricting that was finalized this week, Kinzinger was put into the same district as Darin LaHood (R-Peoria), setting up a possible showdown. This move takes that off the table.

Kinzinger has been the only Illinois GOP representative and one of a handful nationwide to push back against claims of election fraud from former president Donald Trump. He’s also one of only two Republicans to sit on the committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Kinzinger made the announcement in a video posted on his Twitter account.

In the video, he said that he can’t focus on a re-election campaign and do what he sees as a broader effort of fighting polarization. While he didn’t specify anyone by name, he did express respect for the other nine GOP representatives that voted to impeach “someone from their own party.”

He also criticized the increasing hostility between political opponents.

“We’ve allowed leaders to reach power selling the false premise that strength comes from degrading others,” Kinzinger said in the video. “And dehumanizing those that look, act or think differently than we do.”

Although Kinzinger has gotten more support from Democrats since he started pushing back against the “stolen election” narrative and voting to impeach Trump over Jan. 6, he still has a very conservative voting record, including voting for anti-choice legislation and against LGBTQ-supportive bills.

He also said that even though he isn’t running for re-election as a representative, he’s not leaving politics.

The announcement will likely feed more speculation on Kinzinger entering the race for Illinois governor. If he does, he will join an already crowded Republican primary but with better statewide name recognition.

Note: A previous version of this story named Ray LaHood as the representative in the new district. It has been corrected to Darin LaHood, Ray LaHood’s son. We regret the error.

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