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Toomey will not seek a third term

From PBS studios at Steelstacks in Bethlehem, U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey announced Oct. 5 he has decided against seeking reelection to his U.S. Senate seat. Nor will he be running for governor of Pennsylvania in 2022. He instead will return to the private sector after serving out his term. He announced his decision as his wife and three children stood by his side.

Toomey, 58, said his decision was “personal, not political.” He noted that, over the years, he has spent 18 years in elected office. “Eighteen years is a long time,” he noted, adding it’s “a lot of time away from my home.”

That home is here in the Lehigh Valley, in Zionsville.

Calling his service in the U.S. Senate an “extraordinary, amazing honor,” Toomey said he plans to devote his remaining time in Washington to “work as hard as I possibly can.” He hopes to chair the banking committee, where he will strive to “expand opportunities for middle income Americans to become investors.” He also hopes to pursue free trade agreements with the UK and EU, bringing allied countries together against Chinese inroads.

In the senate, Toomey said he worked to “maximize opportunity and prosperity” with tax reform and regulatory relief, and added temporary tax cuts need to be made permanent.

Toomey denied his decision was motivated in any way by President Donald Trump’s recent debate performance or his coronavirus response. He said he supports Trump’s reelection, but added, “I am not responsible for the President’s Twitter feeds.”

He said he made his decision now because he’s been getting daily calls about seeking re-election or running for governor from people suggesting fundraisers and other types of campaign activity. “I need to be candid with them. I made a decision. It’s not going to change. I want to let everyone know.”

Toomey said his decision clears the way for other Republicans who might consider running, but believes he would have won re-election or a race for governor. He noted he’s run in five elections in his political career and won them all.

He added he expects the Republican-controlled senate to confirm Trump’s nomination of Amy Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court.

U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey