The impending retirement of Congressman Lamar Smith is almost here and is expected to overhaul the entire scenery of the primary elections in 2018.
On Thursday, last week, Smith, made an announcement about his retirement plans. The Congressman was elected in the year 1987 and has completed almost 20 years as an official in the government. In his announcement, he said that he now wanted the new generation to take over as he wished to spend most of his time with family members, especially his grandchildren.
Smith retirement could be a positive for the Democrats
The retirement news of Smith came just a few days before the filing for the March-scheduled primary elections begun. He did not have any challenger standing up against him from the Republican Party. Hence, he would automatically get re-elected in November.
According to the Texas Politics Project director, Jim Henson, the retirement of Smith might mean a boost for the Democrats who are trying to earn a seat. Smith’s ‘home’ is District 21, stretching from south of Austin to San Antonio. Henson informs that as opposed to several of the other state areas, there was plenty of Democratic activity happening in District 21 with three potential candidates. He added that if there is a chance to participate in a vote which does not have a Republican area incumbent, there is likely to be higher interest than the usual.
However, Jordon Berry, one of the political advisors who had worked with Smith, says that the district would remain the Grand Old Party. He believes that the seat is safe with the Republicans and the race would end in the constitution of the Republicans.
Congress becoming divisive
According to Henson, regardless of who ends up winning the seat, he/she would have to face several difficulties to make things work. This is because the Congress is continuing to become highly divisive and combative.
Henson informs that in the last ten years, the job has become consistently harder and less glorious. If one looks into the approval ratings in the Congress (in Texas and at the national level), they are quite terrible. He believes that Congress has faced quite a few hurdles regardless of the party that has been ruling at a given time. It’s been a constant struggle involving a lot of hard work, yet the results have been disappointing.