Nick Lampson never thought he'd announce another run for Congress as he did earlier this week. But after seeing the newly drawn lines for District 14 in Jefferson and Galveston counties and fretting over what Congress has become, he changed his mind.
"If I can do something for my community then I have a responsibility to step up to try to do it. And that applies, in my mind, to every citizen of the United States of America," he said.
Lampson first went to Congress in 1997 in District 9. He served four terms before a Republican-led redistricting effort pushed by former House majority leader Tom Delay upended him. He lost a run in District 2 in 2004 before winning Delay's old seat for a term in 2006.
He now wants to go back.
"Congress is broken. Congress is not capable of solving problems right now because of division, polarization," Lampson said.
Lampson will run against the winner of a crowded Republican field and thinks his name recognition and his moderate approach to compromise can put him back to help fix what's broken.
"I think that is probably the greatest issue facing the United States of America today, finding the way back to common ground in the middle of that political spectrum," he said. "The solutions to our problems are in the middle of political spectrum, not at the ends."
There are currently 10 Republicans running in Congressional District 14.
They'll face off in the GOP primary this spring, and the winner will face off against Lampson in the fall. He is the only Democrat.