US House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman ED Royce, known as friend of India in the Congress, today announced he will not seek re-election later this year. Royce, one of the founders of the Congressional Caucus on India and Indian-Americans, said he wants to spend the remaining months of his term to focus on “urgent threats” the US was facing. “In this final year of my Foreign Affairs Committee chairmanship, I want to focus fully on the urgent threats facing our nation, including the brutal, corrupt and dangerous regimes in Pyongyang and Tehran, Vladimir Putin’s continued efforts to weaponise information to fracture western democracies, and growing terrorist threats in Africa and Central Asia,” he said. “With this in mind, and with the support of my wife Marie, I have decided not to seek re-election in November,” he added.
Royce was elected to the Congress for the first time in 1992 from the 39th Congressional district of California, which encompasses areas on the outskirts of Los Angeles. He has been a strong supporter of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He also played a key role in the India-US civil nuclear deal.
Royce has been one of the strongest voices of India-US relationship and Indian-Americans in the Congress. He has also been raising issues of religious freedom and curbs on NGOs in India. In the Congress, Royce frequently raised the issue of terrorist sanctuaries in Pakistan. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said, “He deserves particular praise for his years promoting human rights, especially in the fight to end human trafficking and protect the most vulnerable people around the world.”