U.S. Rep. Brenda Lawrence, D-Southfield, announced on her Facebook page on Tuesday, January 5 that she will not be running for re-election this year.
Her significant decision is one that means that Michigan will no longer have a Black member of Congress, the Detroit Free Press reported.
“This year marks my 30th year in elected public service, and I’ve had the good fortune of serving Michiganders on the local and national level,” she posted on Facebook. “After reflecting on my journey & having conversations with my family, I’m announcing that I will not be seeking re-election to Congress.”
From the Southfield Public Schools’ Board of Education to the Southfield Mayor (first woman and Black person elected) to today, Lawrence said she had the “good fortune” of serving residents locally and nationally.
“Today, after reflecting on my journey and oh my goodness what a journey, and having conversations with my family, I am announcing I will not be seeking reelection to Congress,” she said, adding that she is “incredibly grateful” to Michigan residents of the 14th Congressional District for placing their trust and vote in her.
“In me, just a little Black girl from the Eastside of Detroit,” she said. “You made me your congresswoman. It has been a tremendous honor and privilege to be your voice in Congress and fight for our communities and issues … on a national platform.”
She added that her journey is far from over and she will still be a congresswoman for the rest of the year.
“You can rest assured that I will keep fighting to pass laws to protect our voting rights, women’s rights, and to protect our environment. I will continue to fight to educate our children and provide security for seniors,” Lawrence said.
The Detroit Free Press reported that her office sent out a statement that did not clarify her decision to not run for a fifth two-year term to the U.S. House, but it is surmised that Lawrence was unhappy with the new redistricting process, which linked her coverage of Southfield and the west side of Detroit with Dearborn, Westland and other areas of western Wayne County she has not represented.
Her leaving will present a challenge for those looking to see who could replace the Democratic region.
Lawrence, 67, became the 25th Democratic member of the House to announce the decision to not run for re-election in 2022.
“It is not lost on me that I’m currently the only Black member of the Michigan congressional delegation,” Lawrence said, the Detroit Free Press reported. “Whether it’s in the halls of Congress, city halls, or local school boards, representation matters.”
In the article, Dingell described Lawrence’s work as vital to the community.
“Throughout her 30 years in public service, she supported Michigan students while serving on the Southfield Public Schools Board of Education, gathered communities together as mayor of Southfield, and tied her work together as a representative fighting for American jobs and child care, among many other important issues, in Michigan’s 14th District. I’m thankful to have worked with Brenda.”
Read the full story here.