Yesterday, U.S. Representative Rush Holt announced that he will not be running for re-election to his seat in Congress. Every member of the U.S. House of Representatives must seek re-election or retire this year – and Holt is calling it quits.
This retirement is a significant loss for liberals, as Congressman Holt has been a strong supporter of liberal legislation, even when that legislation countered the center-right agenda of Democratic Party leadership. Last summer, for example, when Barack Obama and most others in the Democratic Party were seeking to prevent any significant reforms to the massive electronic surveillance of Americans by the NSA, Holt introduced a bill to Repeal the Patriot Act and the FISA Amendments Act, the laws that have been used to create legal justification for massive daily searches and seizures of our private electronic communications.
Holt became a candidate for U.S. Senate last year. Sadly, the Democratic Party has become rather unwelcoming to those who actually support progressive policies, and Holt lost to Cory Booker, who has shown a much greater willingness to serve power rather than principles.