Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Joe Straus not running for re-election

HOUSTON— Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives, Joe Straus announced via Facebook Wednesday that he he will not run for re-election in 2018.

“I believe that in a representative democracy, those who serve in public office should do so for a time, not for a lifetime. And so I want you to know that my family and I have decided that I will not run for re-election next year. My time as a State Representative and as Speaker will end at the conclusion of my current term,” Straus said in his lengthy Facebook post.

Straus became the Speaker of the Texas House in January of 2009 and was named one of the state’s “Ten Best Legislators” by Texas Monthly for his leadership. In 2015 Straus solidified his place in the Republican party by providing a $4 billion tax relief and passing a balanced budget that prioritized education, transportation, public safety and mental health care.

Straus made headlines earlier this year during legislation for Senate Bill 3. The controversial bill would only allow civilians to use school restrooms and facilities that match the sex on their birth certificates.  Transgender advocates and major Texas companies opposed the bill creating division among Texas Republican lawmakers, pitting ardent supporter Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick in opposition to Straus.

“One of my heroes, President George H.W. Bush, said, “Any definition of a successful life must include serving others.” I am grateful for the opportunity to lead the Texas House, and I look forward to talking to you more in the future about my continued service to the state of Texas,” Straus said.

The 2018 election will be held on Nov. 6, 2018. All 36 seats will be up for election.