House Republican Leader Themis Klarides, the first woman to lead the Republican caucus in Connecticut, and who has served for 22 years in the state legislature, today announced that she will not seek re-election for a 12th term in the General Assembly this November.
Klarides, elected in 1998, (R-114, Derby, Woodbridge, and Orange) said it was a combination of personal and professional considerations that led to her decision, one that she has agonized over for months.
“This is truly a citizen legislature and we are blessed to serve those that bestow their trust in us. I have tried to live up to those expectations every day for the last 22 years.
“Times change and we have to move on and make decisions about balancing life and how we can best serve those that rely on us,’’ Klarides said. “This is the end of an extremely fulfilling and challenging chapter in my life. But anyone who knows me understands that my commitment to public service is ongoing.
Klarides thanked all the current and former colleagues that she has served with, Republicans and Democrats. She is most proud on a statewide level of her support for taxpayer issues and opposition, most recently, to the implementation of tolls. Locally, her commitment to charities and non-profit organizations has been a priority.
Klarides said she will continue to work with her colleagues for the rest of the term in office to get the state back up and running.
“Government must respond to those who need it most in this time of crisis: the workers who find themselves unemployed, our seniors and first responders who sacrifice daily. We must help them so that they, in turn, can care for their loved ones. I commit to continuing to work to find solutions and common ground that make sense for the taxpayers who ultimately will have to foot the bill,’’ Klarides said.
She also cited some other accomplishments during her tenure in office:
- The passage in 2017 of the bipartisan budget after a 10-month impasse that did not raise taxes and put in place significant spending and borrowing caps that stabilized the state budget;
- Her longstanding commitment to women’s health issues and healthcare, including expanded insurance coverage of breast care treatment and awareness.
- Support for victims’ rights, including domestic violence, drunk driving, and anti-voyeurism laws.