Democratic State Senator Matt McCoy announced today that he will not be a candidate in Iowa's third Congressional district in 2016. In a statement I've enclosed in full below, McCoy said "now is not my time to run," citing his desire to be present for his son's last two years of high school.
McCoy was planning to run in IA-03 in 2002, before then Democratic Representative Leonard Boswell moved to Des Moines. Redistricting following the 2000 census had put Boswell's Decatur County farm in the heavily Republican fifth district.
Desmund Adams is the only declared Democratic challenger to first-term Representative David Young. The 2014 nominee Staci Appel ruled out running earlier this summer. Former Governor Chet Culver and Jim Mowrer, who ran against Representative Steve King in 2014, are rumored to be considering the IA-03 race.
Young is on the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's target list and not yet widely known among his constituents, but Washington Democrats were cool to the idea of McCoy running.
According to the latest figures from the Iowa Secretary of State's office, the sixteen counties in IA-03 contain 150,997 active registered Democrats, 163,107 Republicans, and 163,172 no-party voters.
August 12 press release:
McCoy announces he will not seek election to Iowa's 3rd Congressional district
Iowa State Senator Matt McCoy (D-Des Moines) announced today that he would not seek election to Congress in Iowa's 3rd Congressional district in 2016.
"After a great deal of deliberation with my family, I have determined that a run for Congress at this time is not in my family's best interest," McCoy said. "My son Jack will be entering his junior year in high school, and I want to be around for his remaining two years at home."
"In the past, I have expressed a strong desire to represent the people of Polk County and Southwest Iowa in Congress, but now is not my time to run.
"I have been privileged to serve my Senate district in Iowa for more than 20 years. I have always felt that government is most responsive at the local level. That is where my passion and my commitment to serve is the strongest.
"I will continue to strengthen education for Iowa's children, build ladders of opportunity for working families, and expand mental healthcare for Iowans. These have been my core values, and I have been and will continue to be most effective as a local leader on these issues.
"I believe that a Democrat should represent Iowa's 3rd district, which includes our Capital city, and feel confident that we will field a candidate capable of unseating Rep. David Young. I will work in 2016 to elect Democrats up and down the ticket and to ensure that Democrats maintain control of the Iowa Senate.
"I want to thank all family, friends, and activists who have expressed their support. While this was a difficult decision, the closing factor came down to family. I will continue my commitment as a leader and advocate for the citizens of Des Moines and the State of Iowa."