Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., who currently leads the House Financial Services Committee, announced he will not run for re-election.
"I will be retiring from Congress at the end of my current term," McHenry said in a Dec. 5 statement. "This is not a decision I come to lightly, but I believe there is a season for everything and — for me — this season has come to an end."
McHenry, who briefly served as acting speaker of the House in October, has been an advocate for the crypto industry and a vocal critic of the SEC.
In July, the House Financial Services Committee advanced two digital asset bills under the leadership of McHenry — one focused on stablecoins and one with a more comprehensive framework for regulation of both digital commodities and securities.
Part of the committee's role in Congress is to conduct oversight of the SEC, and McHenry has been outspoken on his disapproval of the agency's rule-making under Chair Gary Gensler.
In a September hearing, McHenry said the SEC's "current approach to rule-making jeopardizes the integrity of our financial markets and puts investors at risk."
McHenry has been especially critical over the SEC's approach to crypto, which he has previously called "regulation by enforcement." One of the reasons he has pushed for crypto legislation in Congress is to establish a clearer regulatory framework for digital asset firms.
The SEC is "punishing digital asset firms for allegedly not adhering to the law when they don't know it will apply to them," McHenry said in an April hearing.
First joining Congress in 2005, McHenry became chair of the House Financial Services Committee in January after serving on the committee for the previous 18 years.
While it's unclear who will take McHenry's seat as committee chair, he said that concerns about the future of the House are "exaggerated."
"There are many smart and capable members who remain, and others are on their way," McHenry said in his statement. "I'm confident the House is in good hands."