Rep. Mark Walker, R-N.C., (R) walks with Rep. Dan Kildee, D-Mich., outside the U.S. Capitol. Walker said he might run for a Senate seat in 2022. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo
Dec. 17 (UPI) -- North Carolina Rep. Mark Walker says he won't seek re-election next year, now that his redrawn district tilts Democratic -- but he's eyeing a run for the U.S. Senate in 2022.
The former Baptist pastor-turned-politician was in his third term when courts struck down North Carolina's gerrymandered congressional districts earlier this year, forcing state lawmakers to redraw their lines.
Walker's 6th District controversially split Greensboro and Guilford County and divided North Carolina A&T, the United States' largest historically black university. Walker's new district takes away parts of seven rural counties and now includes all of Guilford County and the university.
Walker, however, might vie for one of the state's two Senate seats in three years.
"After we have secured more conservative policy and Republican electoral victories for North Carolina, we will take a look at the 2022 Senate race and we are thankful to have President Trump's support," he said Monday.
"For 2020, our focus will be on helping our candidates for president, Senate, and governor be successful."
Walker is the second congressional Republican in North Carolina to cite redrawn districts as their reason for leaving the House.
GOP Rep. George Holding said this month he won't try for re-election after his district added urban Raleigh and North Carolina State University in Wake County and shed five rural districts.
The Republican field for the Senate seat could be competitive, potentially including two other current House members -- Ted Budd and Mark Meadows -- and former Gov. Pat McCrory.