Rep. Mike Rogers Quits Congress For Radio Host Job, So We Guess Being House Intelligence Chair Was Getting A Little Dry
We've all heard of crazy career changes — those 180-degree turns that make rappers take up ostrich farming, or switch doctors into actors (Mr. Chow, anyone?). Now, a U.S. Rep is joining the bunch, as Michigan Rep. Mike Rogers is ending his 14-year tenure in Washington to become a radio host. Yes, really: The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee is retiring from his position on the Hill to start a broadcast career and launch his own radio show.
Rogers announced his decision in an interview on Detroit radio station WJR-AM on Friday. It's not uncommon for politicians to become commentators once they leave office, but Rogers says he won't seek re-election because his own show would be a "rare opportunity," according to the Associated Press. (We'd bet having a lead role in America's national security probably doesn't come around as often as a broadcast openings.)
The former FBI agent has served in Congress since 2001, and was even mentioned as a possible choice to head the FBI and CIA. During his time in office, he's been a prominent defender of the need for U.S. intelligence programs, voiced criticism of the Obama administration, and introduced a proposal to reform the National Security Agency’s program to collect phone call data.
In a statement, Rogers said he's excited to start a new chapter in his life that allows him to "support a strong national security policy agenda." Clearly, helping pilot legislation on American policy wasn't cutting it for the 50-year-old, and talking about it on the radio instead seems like the better choice. As Politico reported, he continued:
As I close this chapter please know that I am not finished with the effort to bring back American 'exceptionalism.' Not in the sense of a great notion, but in the sense of impacting the hopes and dreams of a great nation and her people. You may have lost my vote in Congress but not my voice. I look forward to building on our successes and confronting America’s challenges together.
Tim Skubic, bureau chief of Detroit's WWJ, said the announcement "came out of absolutely nowhere," according to the radio station. While Rogers' retirement may come as a surprise to many residents in Michigan, he's been a prominent broadcast figure with regular appearances on national Sunday interview shows.
Is there a Frank Underwood at work here, a la House of Cards? We doubt it, but Rogers joins Democratic Sen. Carl Levin and Democratic Rep. John Dingell, both also from Michigan, who plan to leave at the end of this term. Only time will tell how the decision will impact Congress, which has already faced an abysmal popularity rating that fell behind hemorrhoids and potholes.