In this March 30, 2011 file photo, Rep. Norm Dicks ( D-Wash.) speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. (J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press)

“I am proud that many of these friendships have crossed the ideological and party lines that tend to separate us, and I have always believed that we can achieve greater results if we leave politics aside when the election season and the floor debates are over,” Dicks said in a statement announcing his decision.

Dicks, 71, and in his 18th term in Congress, is the ranking member on the House Appropriations Committee, and he was in line to become Appropriations Committee chairman if Democrats were able to regain the majority — which looks like it’s at least possible.

Redistricting changed his western Washington 6th district, carving out Olympia and putting it into a new district. But Dicks’s district remained safe.

Dicks was also recently the subject of a Washington Post investigation into earmarks he secured benefitting a newly created state agency where his son was employed.

Dicks is the 14th Democrat to announce his retirement from the House this cycle. Eight others are seeking other office.

Nine Republicans are retiring, with seven others seeking higher office.