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McIntyre to Retire at End of Congressional Term

By: Willard H. Killough III
Managing Editor

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Representative Mike McIntyre announced Wednesday January 8th he will retire at the end of his congressional term. McIntyre has served the 7th Congressional District of Southeastern North Carolina for nine terms since 1997.

In a release issued Wednesday McIntyre commented, "In eastern North Carolina, we have demonstrated that public service is a partnership between the people and the representative they entrust to speak on their behalf.  For us, this has been where the priorities of policy over politics, issues over ideology, dialogue over dollars, and cooperation over campaigning have prevailed. Having answered the call entrusted through this partnership, I will be retiring from the U.S. House of Representatives at the end of this term."

McIntyre explained, "This partnership has transcended politics and allowed us to accomplish monumental tasks, such as quadrupling the number of veterans’ clinics in our area, passing the tobacco buyout, expanding our military bases, establishing an economic commission to promote jobs and fight poverty—and ensuring that the North Carolina coast will continue to be an economic engine and environmental treasure. We also have built new fire and police stations, town halls, and workforce development centers; opened new farmers’ markets and senior centers; improved airports and the Wilmington Port; and expanded educational and recreational opportunities for our children and youth."

He explained, "We have helped thousands of constituents from all walks of life in ways that have significantly impacted their lives. None of this could have been accomplished without the strong commitment of my family, the hard work of my staff, and -- especially -- the willingness of people throughout our region to put partisanship aside and work together to get things done for the betterment of eastern North Carolina. Indeed, I am grateful to all of the Democrats, Republicans, and Independents with whom we have successfully worked through nine elections over 18 years.  My family and I are ready for a new chapter and excited about new opportunities to continue helping North Carolina. My prayer is that those in public service will always put the people they represent first and that God’s blessings will continue to be upon the great citizens of the Seventh Congressional District who live, work, worship, play, serve, and retire in eastern North Carolina.”

Upon the announcement that McIntyre plans to retire at the conclusion of this congressional term, Members of Congress offered their remarks and praise of Congressman McIntyre’s strong legacy of leadership and service to the people of North Carolina. 

Congressman Kurt Schrader, co-chair of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition, released the following statement on the retirement of Congressman Mike McIntyre:

“With the announcement of Congressman Mike McIntyre’s retirement, the U.S. House of Representatives loses a humble servant who dedicated his long career to serving his constituents and all Americans. A dogged fighter for rural Americans, veterans, members of the Armed Services and coastal residents of the Cape Fear Coast, Congressman McIntyre brought together leaders on both sides of the aisle to address the needs of the residents of his beloved North Carolina, which in turn benefitted the country as a whole. On behalf of the Blue Dog Coalition and all members of Congress, we wish him and his family the very best.”

Representative David Price issued the following statement on the retirement on Congressman Mike McIntyre:

“Mike McIntyre has been a tremendously effective advocate for the Seventh District and for all North Carolinians during his time in Congress. His brand of practical problem-solving has especially benefited Eastern North Carolina farmers, veterans and small businesses, and he has particularly stressed outreach to young people. Today, Eastern North Carolina communities have more resources to meet the needs of their people and the region is more vibrant and more economically diversified because of his hard work. These many achievements, and the partnerships he was instrumental in forming, will be a lasting legacy.”

“Mike’s service in Congress also reminds us that political discourse and debate are enriched by people who grapple with how our faith and religious traditions can help us live up to our ideals. He has prioritized issues over ideology, finding practical ways for democratic government to serve the common good. I wish Mike and Dee well as they seek to continue their service outside Congress and will value the rest of our time as colleagues on Capitol Hill.”

Statement from President Obama on the Retirement of Congressman Mike McIntyre:

"In his seventeen years representing the people of North Carolina in the U.S. Congress, Mike McIntyre has been a strong advocate for our men and women in uniform and a key voice on issues that shape the lives of Americans in rural communities.  He’s also been an active participant in the annual National Prayer Breakfast – a reflection of his deep faith.  Michelle and I thank Congressman McIntyre for his service, and we wish him, his wife Dee and their two sons the very best in the future."

McIntyre was challenged by Republican David Rouzer in the 2012 election and won over Rouzer by 655 votes from over 336,000 ballots cast in the 12-county 7th Congressional District.

Rouzer issued a statement Wednesday commenting, "I have genuine respect and appreciation for the work Congressman Mike McIntyre and his staff have done to help countless individuals across Southeastern North Carolina. He has been a tireless advocate for the local needs of the district during his time in office, and I personally appreciate his strong devotion to the Christian Faith. After falling just a handful of votes short in 2012, it is with great optimism that we will continue our mission to bring conservative leadership to Southeastern North Carolina. I will work hard to find long-term solutions to the significant challenges facing our coastal, business and farm communities as well as our Veterans."

McIntyre's retirement changes the political landscape for the 7th Congressional District. Republicans have long sought to win the seat and now local New Hanover County Commission Chairman Woody White has announced he will seek the republican nomination in the upcoming May Primary election against David Rouzer.

Democrat New Hanover County Commissioner Jonathan Barfield said he will seek his party's nomination in the May Primary.

North Carolina Republican Party Chairman Claude Pope issued the following statement:

"The NCGOP would like to thank Rep. McIntyre for his years of service to North Carolina, and we wish him and his family all the best. Even though Rep. McIntyre voted against Obamacare, the outrage over the disastrous consequences of the healthcare law, as well as the rapidly declining popularity of President Obama and Kay Hagan were too much for him to overcome. Today’s announcement is certainly not a good sign for Kay Hagan, who, unlike Rep. McIntyre, cast the deciding vote for Obamacare and lied to North Carolinians at least two dozen times to justify that vote."

In an email to NCGOP supporters Pope wrote:

"Today, Rep. Mike McIntyre, a Democrat from North Carolina’s 7th Congressional District shocked the political world by announcing that he is retiring. McIntyre was considered one of the most vulnerable Democrats running for re-election, and it was a great pickup opportunity for Republicans. However, despite the big news today, we CANNOT take this race for granted and allow it to stay under the control of Nancy Pelosi. The NCGOP will be working hard to make sure a good conservative Republican takes control of this seat, but we need your help right now. Can you donate $10, $25 or even $100 today and help us win North Carolina's 7th District?  Make no mistake, the Democrats will be fighting hard to elect another Democrat to this seat, because it will make it that much easier for Nancy Pelosi to get back the Speaker's gavel. We simply cannot allow that to happen.  Please contribute today and and help us prevent Nancy Pelosi from becoming Speaker of the House."

The North Carolina Democratic Party (NCDP) Chair Randy Voller released the following statement on Representative Mike McIntyre's (D-7) decision to retire at the end of this congressional term:

"For over 18 years, Congressman McIntyre has served eastern North Carolina with honor and distinction in the U.S. House.  From championing economic development for the region, to fighting for on behalf of our brave men and women in uniform, Congressman McIntyre has made the people of his district and North Carolina proud,” Voller said.  “Throughout his tenure, Mike has transcended politics as usual to produce real results for the people of the Seventh Congressional District.  North Carolina Democrats thank and honor Mike’s long service and advocacy on behalf of our state.  We look forward to supporting Mike in this new chapter and thank him and his family for their dedication and sacrifice spanning nearly two decades of service."

U.S. Senator Kay Hagan today released the following statement on the retirement of North Carolina Congressman Mike McIntyre:

"As a tireless advocate for our service members and veterans, our farmers and our families, Mike has been a true champion for the people of eastern North Carolina during his 17 years in Congress. From advocating for new community fire departments to promoting job growth and economic development – no task was ever too big or too small for him to take on. The 7th District is undoubtedly a better place because of his service. I thank Mike for his years of contributions to our state and wish him well in his next chapter."

On Thursday Woody White's campaign sent out the following email:

Our country is at a crossroads, and 2014 will be an important year in determining the path we take. Will we continue down the path of debt, decline, and government intrusion into every facet of our lives? Or will we correct course and take the path of fiscal responsibility and economic prosperity? I want the latter, and that is why I have decided to run for Congress.

I am a lifelong resident of the 7th Congressional District. I was born in Lenoir County, raised in Bladen County, and have lived in New Hanover County for almost 20 years. I have been married to my wife, Tammie, for 18 1/2 years, and we have two children. I have owned a small business for 18 years, and had to meet payroll every two weeks.

I know what it is like to raise a family and run a business here, and I know the challenges we face every day. I am running for Congress because North Carolina needs a fresh, conservative voice in Washington with a proven record of leadership and problem-solving. Washington needs less divisive rhetoric that leads to dysfunction, and more average people from the real world who are not concerned about the next election, but the next generation.

I am pro-life, love to hunt and fish, believe the Bible is the word of God, and will always fight Obama's attacks on North Carolina - including making repealing Obamacare a top priority. Click on the image below to watch a video to learn more about my conservative values, my family, and me. After you watch the video, be sure to sign up to receive updates from our campaign.

White's website is