Following impeachment of DHS Sec. Mayorkas, Homeland Security Committee Chair and GOP Rep. Mark Green reveals he will 'go out on top' and retire from Congress

 February 15, 2024

Following months of investigation led by House Homeland Security Committee Chair Mark Green (R-TN), House Republicans recently succeeded in impeaching Homeland Security Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas for his dismal leadership of that department and his refusal to fully enforce the nation's existing border security and immigration laws.

Now, with that impeachment victory under his belt, Rep. Green announced on Wednesday his plans to retire at the end of the current term and "go out on top" instead of seeking re-election to a fourth term in Congress, the Washington Examiner reported.

In addition to his achieving what he had set out to do, the congressman revealed that his impending departure is also based on how "very frustrated" he has become with how dysfunctional Washington D.C. and the federal government are.

"It is time for me to return home"

"At the start of the 118th Congress, I promised my constituents to pass legislation to secure our borders and to hold Secretary Mayorkas accountable," Rep. Green said in a statement Wednesday. "Today, with the House having passed H.R. 2 and Secretary Mayorkas impeached, it is time for me to return home."

"In the last few months, in reading the writings of our Framers, I was reminded of their intent for representatives to be citizen-legislators, to serve for a season and then return home," he continued. "Our country -- and our Congress -- is broken beyond most means of repair. I have come to realize our fight is not here within Washington, our fight is with Washington. As I have done my entire life, I will continue serving this country -- but in a new capacity."

Green went on to express his gratitude for the support of his wife and family, the "unbelievable honor" he felt in having been chosen to represent his district's constituents, and how thankful he was for the dedication and hard work displayed by his staffers.

"Did exactly what I had planned to do"

Rep. Green touched on some of those same themes in a Wednesday interview with the Examiner about his retirement decision, during which he said, "It’s pretty clear that the founders, the framers of the Constitution at least, intended the people’s representatives to serve for a season and then go home."

"We’re not intended to be here to grow old in Congress. So, there’s that constitutional piece that really kind of honestly probably is what pushed me over the edge," he continued.

Regarding the recent impeachment of DHS Sec. Mayorkas after months of investigation, Green told the outlet, "We did exactly what I had planned to do, and that was hold the administration accountable for the failure at the border. So impeaching Mayorkas was kind of the last thing."

"All my life, I’ve served this country in some capacity. I have 24 years in the Army, six years as a state senator, and I had a six-year hiatus … but now I’m here in Congress. I think the fight is actually between the states and Washington," he added. "I want to go out, and I want to go out on top. I just want to go out having done what I said I was going to do and then move on to what’s next for me to serve in Tennessee and then our country."

Immediate plan is to help Trump get re-elected

The Tennessean reported that Rep. Green, a retired U.S. Army major who is also a doctor, clearly signaled that while he considered himself to be done in terms of his service in Congress since he was first elected in 2018, he is not stepping away from politics altogether and is viewed by some pundits as a possible candidate for governor in the state in 2026.

Axios reported that the outgoing congressman has not confirmed any plans to run for a higher office in the future but also didn't rule out that possibility, and instead made it clear that his primary focus right now is on helping former President Donald Trump win re-election to a second term in November.

The Tennessean noted that Green had supported Trump's 2016 run as a member of the Tennessee General Assembly and had actually been Trump's first choice in 2017 to serve as the Secretary of the Army, though he ultimately withdrew himself from consideration for that role amid controversy about prior statements some people found offensive and instead ran for and won his seat in Congress the following year.

According to the U.S. House Press Gallery's "Casualty List," Green appears to be the 21st Republican member -- out of 44 members total thus far -- to announce plans to retire or seek a different office after the current term. That number is substantial, per the Examiner, but doesn't match the 52 who left office in the 2018 cycle or the 65 members who resigned during the 1992 cycle.

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