Utah Congressman Jason Chaffetz, the formerly-Jewish college football star who now chairs the House Oversight Committee, declared Wednesday that he would not be running for any office in 2018, surprising his Republican allies and delighting many on Twitter. The New Yorker’s television critic, Emily Nussbaum, may have had the best reaction:
During Passover, it is traditional to remove all the Chaffetz from the House.— emily nussbaum (@emilynussbaum) April 20, 2017
Chametz is the Hebrew word for leavened bread products that are forbidden on Passover. Many Jews make a ritual of sweeping their homes free of every leavened crumb.
Chaffetz’s Twitter handle, @Jasoninthehouse, will presumably have to be changed after he leaves office. That day may come sooner than expected: He reportedly texted a Utah news radio station host on Wednesday evening to say that he “may depart early” from Washington before his term expires in January 2019.