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U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann won't seek re-election

  |   May 29, 2013 at 7:14 AM
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WASHINGTON, May 29 (UPI) -- U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., a Tea Party movement leader in Congress, announced Wednesday she wouldn't seek re-election.

"After a great deal of thought and deliberation, I have decided next year I will not seek a fifth congressional term," Bachmann said in a video posted on her campaign website. "After serious consideration, I am confident this is the right decision."

She said the constitutional limit of eight years in office imposed on the president also was "long enough for an individual to serve as a representative for a specific congressional district."

Bachmann said her decision not to seek re-election wasn't influenced by questions about whether she could win re-election nor "impacted in any way" about inquiries about her 2012 presidential campaign and presidential campaign staff.

Bachmann had sought the Republican Party presidential nomination in 2012, winning the Ames, Iowa, straw poll, before falling behind in the state's caucuses. Her presidential bid prompted an ethics investigation into alleged improper payments to campaign consultants.

Bachmann slogged through a tough congressional race last year, besting her Democratic challenger, hotelier Jim Graves, by 4,300 votes. Graves announced last month that he would run again for Minnesota's 6th Congressional District.

"I've never considered holding public office an occupation," Bachmann said in the video and pledged to fight for conservative causes for the next 18 months. "I've always considered it to be an honor and privilege."

Thanking her husband, children, foster children and constituents, Bachmann said her future "is full. It is limitless and my passion for America remains."

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