In a major political shake-up ahead of the 2018 midterms, Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio), announced Tuesday that he’s leaving his seat in the House to spend more time focused on the Halversons, a neighbor family who live across the street from him in his home district.
Speaking to reporters from outside his Capital Hill offices, Latta, a six-term congressional veteran, said he couldn’t stand the thought of continuing to be hundreds of miles away in D.C. as the people he cares about most in the world went about their nightly routines in front of carelessly opened window blinds, oblivious to the telescope lens aimed at their house some 30 yards away.
“It has been one of the great honors of my life to serve the citizens of northwest Ohio,” Latta said. “But the fact of the matter is there’s a very special family back home and I want to spend as much time as possible carefully adjusting my focusing on them.”
Stating that he often looks at a grainy, long-range photo of the Halversons he keeps on his desk in Washington, Latta said his legislative duties were starting to keep him from where he truly belongs: A dimly-lit crawl space in which he can chain-smoke cigarettes and enjoy an unobstructed view of the Halversons’ living room, dining room, study, and, most importantly, master bedroom.
“For me, this is about priorities,” Latta said, noting a particular desire to be home as the Halverson’s eldest daughter Stephanie enters her teenage years. “I’m tired of ducking out of black-tie fundraisers on Friday night to catch the red-eye, only to get home and discover the family has already gone to bed and turned out all the lights before I even have enough light to see them.”
It was not an easy decision, Latta admits, but in the end he says he hopes retirement will enable him to grow even closer to the Halversons, especially now that a new bedroom mirror is perfectly angled to see down the hall into the bathroom.