US & World

Diane Watson announces plan to retire from Congress

Rep. Diane Watson, D-California, will announce tomorrow that she's not running for re-election to Congress.
Rep. Diane Watson, D-California, will announce tomorrow that she's not running for re-election to Congress.
Kitty Felde

Congresswoman Diane Watson of Los Angeles today said she won’t seek re-election this year because she wants to spend more time with her 100-year-old mother.

“I haven’t really had the chance to spend the quality time with my mom," said Congresswoman Diane Watson during a press conference. "She broke her hip a couple of days before Christmas and she went into rehab and she is coming home this weekend. And I welcome time to spend with her.”

Democrat Diane Watson announced Thursday, Feb. 11, 2010 that she is not running for re-election to Congress.



Watson’s represented parts of South Los Angeles, Culver City and Hancock Park for nearly a decade. She declined to endorse a successor, but reportedly will back State Assembly Speaker Karen Bass. Los Angeles Deputy City Attorney Felton Newell is also running.

Watson’s well known in Southern California politics.

In 1975 after a career as an elementary school teacher and school psychologist, she became the first African American woman elected to the board of the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Three years later, voters sent Watson to the state senate, where she spent more than a decade.

In 1999, President Clinton appointed her U.S. Ambassador to Micronesia.