Midstate GOP Congressman Charlie Dent won’t seek another term

U.S. Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa.  (J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo)

U.S. Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo)

One of Congress’s most vocal moderates has announced he’s stepping down.

Pennsylvania’s 15th District representative, Republican Charlie Dent, announced late on Thursday that he won’t seek reelection next year — a decision he said he came to in mid-summer.

Dent has cut a distinct path over the course of his seven terms in Congress.

Recently, he opposed a GOP plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act — a move that reportedly led President Donald Trump to tell Dent he was “destroying the Republican Party.”

Dent is a co-chair of the Tuesday Group, a caucus of moderates who call themselves the “governing wing” of the Republican party. He also chairs the appropriations subcommittee on military construction and veterans’ affairs.

In a statement, Dent said he’s done his best amid “increased polarization and ideological rigidity that leads to dysfunction, disorder, and chaos.”

His departure will open a second Republican seat in Pennsylvania, making the state a likely battleground in 2018.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.