Republican Rep. Drew Ferguson of Georgia announced his plans to leave office at the end of this term, joining a flurry of other retirements this fall.
In a statement posted Thursday on X, formerly Twitter, Ferguson said that, after four terms of flying back and forth to Washington, it was time to go home and stay home. “Georgia is truly a special place, and it’s calling us home,” he wrote.
From his positions on the House Ways and Means and Budget committees, Ferguson was a consistent small-government, fiscal conservative. He served as chief deputy to Republican Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., until last year and sought the whip role himself, making him the latest casualty of the GOP’s internecine leadership fights. Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., announced last week his intent to resign before the end of the 118th Congress, which was followed by House Financial Services Chairman Patrick T. McHenry, R-N.C., declaring his retirement plans at the end of the term a few days later. House Appropriations Chairwoman Kay Granger, R-Texas, announced her retirement last month.
Ferguson was one of many Republicans who received death threats amid the speakership fights earlier this year, after voting against Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, to take the gavel.
As a former dentist who ran his own practice, Ferguson regularly sided with small-business interests seeking lower taxes or reduced regulations, voting against attempts to raise the minimum wage.
More than 30 members of the House have already said they won’t seek reelection in 2024.
Even though a federal judge ordered Georgia to redraw its congressional map before the 2024 election, Ferguson’s departure is unlikely to change the partisan makeup for the House. His deeply red west Georgia district reelected him by over 35 percentage points in 2022, and any changes to its composition are unlikely to dramatically shift the dynamic.
Ferguson’s retirement after four terms is consistent with something he said when he first arrived in Washington. “I don’t think that people should stay up here too long, and I can see where, in a lot of ways, this is a self-limiting process. I feel that there are a lot of members that have been up here way too long. I do think that a change in leadership periodically is a good thing,” he told Roll Call in 2017.
Eleanor Van Buren contributed to this report.