Congressman Doolittle was nearly defeated in the most conservative district in California by Retired Air Force Lt. Colonel Charlie Brown.
The Congressman who has served since 1990, has come under fire for his involvement with lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
According to the AP story, Doolittle has denied wrongdoing in his ties to Abramoff, the disgraced former lobbyist whom he considered a close friend. But after the FBI raided the congressman’s Virginia home in April looking for information about event-planning work that Doolittle’s wife did for Abramoff, the congressman was forced to step down from the powerful Appropriations Committee.
Republican leaders have not only distanced themselves from the Congressman but have encouraged him not to run.
In the last hour, Democrat Charlie Brown has issued the following statement:
“I believe John did the right thing today for his family, for the 4th District and for America. Now is the time to unite as Americans, heal our wounds and move forward to solve the many difficult challenges we face both here in CD4, and across the country we love.”
Unfortunately for Charlie Brown and the Democrats, this move puts in peril Brown’s chances for election in the heavily Republican district that extends from Roseville to the Nevada Border. A number of Republicans have already stepped forward to challenge Mr. Doolittle and without the stain of scandal, it may be difficult for Brown to make headway.
Nevertheless, Brown has created a formidable organization with money and a strong grassroots movement. His moderate views and background as a military official will serve him well in this fight.
—Doug Paul Davis reporting