Earlier this week, a number of Tarrant County Republicans — including Tarrant County Republican Party Chairman Tim O’Hare — asked him to “not seek re-election and to retire from Congress by the end of this year.”
“We must hold public officials to a high standard and recent publicized incidents demonstrate those standards were not met,” Burton, R-Colleyville, said in a statement Wednesday afternoon. “With only weeks left for primary filing, I am asking Joe Barton not to seek re-election so that Tarrant County can move forward in making sure we send a strong conservative to Congress from District 6.
“Many have discussed Tarrant County Tax Assessor Collector Ron Wright stepping up to run for this position in the event Congressman Barton does not seek reelection,” she said. “Ron is a man of great character and integrity and I want to make it clear that I am 100 percent behind him if he decides to do so.”
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Earlier Wednesday, an Arlington woman shared a series of private messages — some with sexual overtones — that she exchanged with Barton.
Barton filed earlier this year for re-election but could choose to withdraw from the race. Filing for spots on next year’s March 6 primary ballot runs until Dec. 11.
Barton has represented the 6th Congressional District, which includes most of Arlington and Mansfield and all of Ellis and Navarro counties, since 1985. Burton’s district includes several Tarrant County communities, including parts of Fort Worth, Arlington, Mansfield and Colleyville.
Some Republicans question whether Barton’s presence on a ballot could impact Burton’s re-election bid.