Denouncing Republicans in the North Carolina General Assembly for the recently enacted congressional redistricting that carves out some of his Democratic base, longtime 1st District Congressman G.K. Butterfield announced Thursday that he will not seek reelection again.
In a video announcement, Butterfield, who has served since 2004, said he was disappointed in the legislature’s GOP majority, saying the recently enacted map was gerrymandered.
“It’s racially gerrymandered, it will disadvantage African American communities all across the 1st Congressional District. I am disappointed, terribly disappointed with the Republican majority legislature for again, gerrymandering our state’s congressional districts and putting their party politics over the best interests of North Carolina and while I am hopeful that the courts will also play overturn this partisan map, and see that a fair map is enacted, I have made the difficult decision that I will not seek reelection to the United States House of Representatives. It is time for me to retire and allow the torch to be passed to someone who shares the values of the district and can continue the work,” Butterfield said in the video.
A number of legal challenges to the redistricting have been filed, including this week by the North Carolina League of Conservation Voters, seeking to stop the state from holding elections using the new congressional and legislative maps.
Butterfield was appointed in 2007 as chief deputy whip of the House Democratic Caucus, and in the current session was elevated to replace the late Rep. John Lewis as a senior chief deputy whip, the first Democrat from North Carolina to serve in this role.