Rep. Devin Nunes' 10th term in Congress will be his last, as the California Republican announced Monday that he will retire at the end of the year to lead the media company being started by former President Donald Trump.
Nunes will leave the U.S. House, after being "presented with a new opportunity to fight for the most important issues I believe in," he said in a statement on Instagram.
Trump Media & Technology Group announced Monday that Nunes will be its CEO.
“I will deeply miss being your congressman. It’s been the honor of a lifetime to represent you, and I thank you for the trust you put in me through all these years," Nunes wrote on Instagram.
Nunes represents California's 22nd Congressional District which covers Tulare and Fresno counties in the Republican-leaning San Joaquin Valley. He assured his supporters that he does not plan to disappear from the public eye.
“Rest assured, I have not, by any means, given up our collective fight — I'll just be pursuing it through other means," Nunes' statement read.
The former president, who is chairman of TMTG, called Nunes "a fighter and a leader."
"Devin understands that we must stop the liberal media and Big Tech from destroying the freedoms that make America great. America is ready for TRUTH Social and the end to censorship and political discrimination," Trump said in a news release on Monday.
In the TMTG release, Nunes said, “The time has come to reopen the Internet and allow for the free flow of ideas and expression without censorship. The United States of America made the dream of the Internet a reality, and it will be an American company that restores the dream. I’m humbled and honored President Trump has asked me to lead the mission and the world-class team that will deliver on this promise.”
Nunes has served in the House since 2003. He is the ranking member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and a member of the Ways and Means Committee.
In 2019, Nunes filed a lawsuit that accused Twitter of "shadow-banning conservatives" – including Nunes – while profiting from abusive behavior and language allegedly perpetrated by liberal and left-wing Twitter accounts, including @DevinCow and @DevinNunesMom, both of which are listed as defendants. In June 2020, a judge ruled Twitter could not be sued, citing Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
Advantage in district has slimmed
Nunes’ close relationship with Trump has cut into his popularity in the district. While Trump won Nunes’ district in 2016, his victory margin was a slim 8 points, winning 53% to 41% over Hilary Clinton.
In 2018 and 2020, Nunes faced tough challenges from Democrats Andrew Janz and Phil Arballo, cutting Nunes’ wins to single digits.
A proposed California redistricting plan is not helpful for Nunes.
According to the Cook Political Report's Dave Wasserman, the new district lines mean Nunes will go from representing a district Trump carried by 5 percentage points to a district President Joe Biden carried by 9 percentage points. FiveThirtyEight's redistricting tracker estimates that the "partisan lean" of the district favors Democrats by roughly 5 percentage points.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: California Rep. Devin Nunes will resign to be Trump media company CEO