WASHINGTON, Feb. 18 (UPI) -- Freshman Rep. Gloria Negrete McLeod, D-Calif., announced she's leaving Congress to run for county supervisor in her home state.
"I have chosen to seek election to the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors and not re-election to Congress," the congresswoman said in a release. "This was a decision not made lightly. However my desire to represent this community locally, where I have lived for more than 40 years, and where I have long served as an elected official, won out."
Negrete McLeod, 72, had been considering running for San Bernadino County supervisor for about a month, Roll Call reported. Democratic officials said the position, which oversees one of the largest counties in California, debatably has more power than a sophomore member of Congress in the minority party, Roll Call said.
In the 2012 election cycle, Negrete McLeod defeated former Rep. Joe Baca, D-Calif., in a general election to represent the 35th Congressional District after California instituted new primary rules that send the top two vote-getters to the general election, even if from the same party.
Baca had switched to run in the neighboring 31st Congressional District, Roll Call said. Despite speculation from Democratic officials that Baca could return to the 35th District, Baca told Roll Call Tuesday that he will remain in the 31st District.
"I'm running in the 31st [Congressional District] seat. I've been running there," Baca said. "That's where I'm at."