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After GOP Wave, Williams Won't Challenge Walden for NRCC

Walden is an Oregon Republican. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

With House Republicans winning their largest majority since 1929, the posturing to challenge National Republican Congressional Committee Greg Walden may be over.  

While there are still some questions whether Rep. Aaron Schock, R-Ill., — or any other House Republican — will challenge Walden, at least one potential contender is out.  

Texas Republican Roger Williams sent House Republicans a 'Dear Colleague' letter Wednesday saying — in less than clear terms — he would not be challenging Walden to head the NRCC. "Without question, last night was an historic night to be a Republican, and I am proud of our team!" Williams began his letter.  

He goes on to say that, "in the past few weeks," there have been "media reports, rumors, and a lot of discussion" about changes at the NRCC. "I was honored and humbled to hear from many of you encouraging me to take a look at running for Chairman," he said.  

"However, now is not the time for more political gamesmanship," he continued. "Now is the time to work together as a team with strong Republican leadership."  

While the letter itself is less than clear whether that means he won't be running, his staff confirmed to CQ Roll Call Wednesday that the letter marks his exit from the NRCC race that never quite officially began.  

The full text of the letter is below:

Dear Colleague, Without question, last night was an historic night to be a Republican, and I am proud of our team! We now have the largest majority in over 70 years, and the time has come to govern. First, I want to congratulate Chairman Greg Walden and the NRCC team on driving us right through our goal of ‘245’. Speaker Boehner, Chairman Walden, and our entire team have worked tirelessly to get us to this historic majority, and I am grateful to be a part of this winning team. In the past few weeks, there have been media reports, rumors, and a lot of discussion about changes at our congressional committee. I was honored and humbled to hear from many of you encouraging me to take a look at running for Chairman. However, now is not the time for more political gamesmanship. Now is the time to work together as a team with strong Republican leadership. Our strongest position is to unite, govern, get things done, and have a message that we can use to build on last night’s victories for the future growth of our party. When I ran for Congress, it was to bring conservative small business principles and family values back to government. With this new majority, I believe my constituents are best served if I focus on these principles that you and I believe in so strongly. Chairman Walden and I had a great conversation this morning, and I let him know I intend to work right along-side him to make our committee better, stronger and more prosperous for 2016 and beyond. The 2016 cycle will present a whole new set of challenges, and we must be ready. The NRCC has to out-work, over-perform, and out-hustle our opposition this next cycle, and I am looking forward to working with Chairman Walden to make this possible. As I have discussed with many of you, I want to help improve the way the NRCC does business in order to retain and expand our incredible majority. We can make our committee a better place for us all. Remembering that YOU are the customer at the NRCC and YOU are also the very best resource the NRCC has to win more friends and influence others across this great country. I can’t wait to get started! I look forward to building on the successes of last night. With respect to you all, Roger Williams
Abby Livingston contributed to this report. Related Stories: House Republicans Win Largest Majority in Decades Coup Brews Against NRCC Chairman Roll Call Election Map: Race Ratings for Every Seat Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.