Ex-Dem Congressman Abruptly Ends Re-Election Campaign After Revealing Medical Diagnosis


Former Congressman Harley Rouda has dropped out of the race for the U.S. House, citing “a moderate traumatic brain injury.”

In an announcement posted to Twitter Tuesday, Rouda said he was diagnosed after “an unfortunate fall.”

Rouda said he was ending his campaign for the House based on the advice of his doctors.

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An intraparenchymal hemorrhage refers to bleeding into the brain’s functional tissue, as opposed to connective or supporting tissue, according to the National Institutes of Health.

It can be caused by trauma — such as a fall — and “can be life-threatening,” according to the NIH.

Rouda had been running to replace Rep. Katie Porter, who in turn had decided to run not for re-election to the House but instead for the Senate seat of retiring Sen. Dianne Feinstein.

Rouda had previously served one term in the House, after defeating longtime GOP Congressman Dana Rohrabacher in 2018. He lost his 2020 re-election to Republican Michelle Steel.

Do agree with Rouda’s decision to drop out?

“Late last month, following an unfortunate fall, I was transported to a nearby hospital,” Rouda said in his announcement. “Tests revealed that I suffered a moderate traumatic brain injury with two intra parenchymal hemorrhages – a concerning diagnosis to say the least.”

“Thankfully, my doctors say that I have started on the path to a full recovery,” he wrote.

“But on their advice, I am ending my campaign for California’s 47th congressional district today.

“This is not the outcome I wanted. But my family comes first, and to be there for them, I need to focus fully on my recovery in the months ahead.”

Max Ukropina, who had been running against Rouda for the House seat prior to Rouda’s withdrawal, tweeted his best wishes to the Democrat.

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“The Ukropina family is praying for you, Harley,” Ukropina wrote. “You got this. Thank you for continuing to care for our district.”

CORRECTION, April 12, 2023: Democrat Harley Rouda lost his 2020 re-election bid to Republican Michelle Steel. An earlier version of this article had a different name for the GOP candidate.

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George Upper is the former Editor-in-Chief of The Western Journal and was a weekly co-host of "WJ Live," powered by The Western Journal. He is currently a contributing editor in the areas of faith, politics and culture. A former U.S. Army special operator, teacher and consultant, he is a lifetime member of the NRA and an active volunteer leader in his church. Born in Foxborough, Massachusetts, he has lived most of his life in central North Carolina.
George Upper, is the former editor-in-chief of The Western Journal and is now a contributing editor in the areas of faith, politics and culture. He currently serves as the connections pastor at Awestruck Church in Greensboro, North Carolina. He is a former U.S. Army special operator, teacher, manager and consultant. Born in Massachusetts, he graduated from Foxborough High School before joining the Army and spending most of the next three years at Fort Bragg. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in English as well as a Master's in Business Administration, all from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He and his wife life only a short drive from his three children, their spouses and his grandchildren. He is a lifetime member of the NRA and in his spare time he shoots, reads a lot of Lawrence Block and John D. MacDonald, and watches Bruce Campbell movies. He is a fan of individual freedom, Tommy Bahama, fine-point G-2 pens and the Oxford comma.
Foxborough, Massachusetts
Beta Gamma Sigma
B.A., English, UNCG; M.A., English, UNCG; MBA, UNCG
North Carolina
Languages Spoken
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Faith, Business, Leadership and Management, Military, Politics