Barbara Boxer announces she won't run for re-election

Barbara Boxer, who has served in Congress since 1982, is finally retiring, having yesterday announced that she will not seek re-election.  The National Journal reports:

In an interview with her grandson Zach Rodham (who is also Hillary Clinton's nephew), Boxer said that while she will be leaving Congress, she will continue her work on Democratic politics. And when it came to 2016, she dropped a very large hint.

"Zach, I am never going to retire. The work is too important. But I will not be running for the Senate in 2016," Boxer said. "I have to make sure the Senate seat stays progressive. That is so critical. And I want to help our Democratic candidate for president make history."

With the possible exception of Harry Reid, Boxer is the most despicable member of the United States Senate.  She is the hardest of hard-line pro-abortion advocates, seemingly extending to early infant euthanasia, in this Senate exchange captured by C-SPAN:

“I think when you bring your baby home, when your baby is born … the baby belongs to your family and has all the rights.” Santorum persisted: “Obviously, you don’t mean they have to take the baby out of the hospital for it to be protected by the Constitution. Once the baby is separated from the mother, you would agree – completely separated from the mother  you would agree that the baby is entitled to constitutional protection?” She would not say “yes.” Instead, she said, understandably: “I don’t want to engage in this.”

She is also notoriously arrogant and thin-skinned, epitomized by her dressing down a general for referring to her as “ma’am” instead of “Senator.”

“Do me a favor, could you say ‘Senator’ instead of ‘ma’am’?” Boxer said. “It’s just a thing. I worked so hard to get that title, so I’d appreciate it. Yes, thank you.”

The upcoming vacancy could lure California’s two most prominent rising-star politicians, AG Kamala Harris and Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom, into running.  Both are pathologically ambitious, and both are former San Francisco politician, Harris as DA and Newsom as mayor.  Because California has a general election with the two top vote-getters in the primary facing off against each other, the general election could feature a choice between these two.

But both realize that Jerry Brown is term-limited and cannot run for re-election in 2018.  So rather than face a possible defeat in 2016, one of them (probably Newsom) could decide not to run.  There is close to zero possibility of a Republican winning the race, though some are trying to talk up the possibility of Condoleezza Rice running.

One thing is certain: the average IQ of the Senate will rise in 2017.

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