Representative Dennis Cardoza has announced his retirement, effective immediately at midnight August 15.

Cardoza represented California’s 18th District, which includes parts of Hollister, Merced and Modesto.

The congressman cited pressing family needs in an interview with the Sacramento Bee Monday.

In his official statement, Cardoza thanks his family for supporting him during his tenure, “Above all, I want to thank my family. Each and every one of them has sacrificed to allow me to serve.”

Thanks to the 2011 redistricting efforts of the new, non-partisan citizen committee, Cardoza’s area became more Republican. The district lost a chunk of Stockton, which leans Democratic.

Cardoza had announced he would not seek reelection back in October 2011.

As a member of the Blue Dog Coalition of conservative Democrats, Cardoza had a mixed record on gay rights, abortion and affirmative action issues, according to

But, he cites in his farewell statement that he made progress on cleaner air, better health care, and bringing new road and bridge construction projects to the Central Valley.