Buffalo-area GOP congressman won’t run again after losing party support for backing gun control measures

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Republican Rep. Chris Jacobs of New York announced Friday he will not run again for Congress, after he lost the support of conservatives following comments that he would back a ban of AR-15s and raising the age of gun ownership to 21.

Jacobs represents the 27th Congressional District but had been considering a bid for the newly drawn 23rd Congressional District seat. The Buffalo-area congressman’s announced support for those stricter gun measures came after 10 people were killed in a racially motivated mass shooting at a supermarket in Buffalo last month.

“Despite this backlash, I truly believe I could win this election, but it would be an incredibly divisive election for both the Republican Party and for the people of the 23rd District, many of whom I have not ever represented,” he said Friday. “The last thing we need is an incredibly negative, half-truth filled media attack funded by millions of dollars of special interest money coming into our community around this issue of guns and violence and gun control.”

New York’s 23rd Congressional District strongly favors Republicans. Jacobs who won a special election in 2020, said that while he will not run for the new congressional district, he will finish his “time as a 27th (District) member of Congress ’til the end of the year.”

The New York congressman is the 20th House Republican leaving Congress at the end of the term. He is the 18th Republican to either announce they would retire or run for higher office; GOP Reps. Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina and David McKinley of West Virginia lost their primary elections.

So far, 32 House Democrats are leaving Congress at the end of the term.

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