Assistant House Minority Leader Tim Geitner won't seek a third term in the legislature this fall, the Falcon Republican announced late Thursday.
Geitner, who holds the No. 2 House GOP leadership spot, said in an email to supporters that he wants to spend more time with the two sons he and his wife, El Paso County Commissioner Carrie Geitner, teach at home.
"As many of you know, we are a family that values our faith and takes seriously our responsibility as homeschooling parents," Geitner wrote. "The many late nights I have fought under the gold dome, and numerous evenings and weekends spent defending our beloved Colorado have been a sacrifice my family willingly made. However, now with one teenage boy just a few years from leaving the nest, and a second son right behind him, Carrie and I believe that God is finally calling us to slow down and focus more on instilling our values, spending time with our boys, and honoring our family."
Geitner's announcement comes just days before precinct caucuses kick off the campaign season, with El Paso County Republicans holding theirs on March 1.
Geitner said he's "committed to finishing this legislative strong" but plans to shift his focus after the conclusion of his term to "fulfill the most important role God has called me to — being a father."
Added Geitner: "My heart is extremely heavy to leave this great work. To all who have stood by me and my family along this journey, words cannot describe and I cannot fully express my gratitude. Nevertheless, now is the time to return to the battlefield in my own backyard, ensure my children have the family and father I never had, and pass the torch to others to continue fighting the ceaseless battle."
Calling Geitner a "conservative champion for parents' rights, veterans and the Constitution," Colorado Republican Party Chairwoman Kristi Burton Brown thanked the Army combat veteran for his years of service to the state and country.
"Colorado Springs and El Paso County are better off because of his work and dedication," Burton Brown said in a statement. "Rep. Geitner sponsored a number of bills that should become law in Colorado, including extending the homestead exemption to our Gold Star families and making public school curriculum easily available to all parents."
First elected to represent House District 19 with 76% of the vote in 2018, Geitner had been running for reelection in the heavily Republican House District 20, where his family lives under new legislative lines drawn last fall by an independent redistricting commission.
According to campaign finance records, Geitner had just over $12,000 in his campaign account at the beginning of the year. He didn't respond to a request for comment.
Republican Israel Del Toro Jr., a retired Air Force senior master sergeant and one of the nation's most well-known and accomplished disabled veterans, launched a primary challenge to Geitner last month. Del Toro, who suffered catastrophic burns and lost one hand in a roadside explosion during a 2005 deployment to Afghanistan, became the first 100% combat-disabled airman to reenlist, capping a 22-year military career with a parachute jump in 2017 at the Air Force Academy.
Democrats have yet to field a candidate in the district.
Editor's note: This is a developing story that will be updated.