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US Rep. Matt Salmon of Arizona to retire at end of term

PHOENIX — U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon of Arizona announced Thursday he would not run for re-election when his term ends this year.

In a statement, Salmon said:

“When I returned to the House of Representatives in 2013, the President’s disastrous policies were putting our nation at risk, both at home and abroad. Over the past three years, I’ve worked to curtail the largest expansion of peacetime spending in America’s history by working with members from both sides of the aisle. This is something to be proud of.

“But the most important job I have is that of husband and father, and over the years I’ve missed far too many opportunities to spend time with my family. I truly believe that they should come first in my life, and after much soul-searching I’ve decided against running for reelection.

“I give you my word, won’t be stopping my fight for our nation’s future, but I will be continuing it as a constituent in the Valley of the Sun. It has been an honor serving the constituents of Arizona’s Fifth District and I look forward to seeing you back home in Arizona.”

Salmon, 58, represents the 5th congressional district, which is mostly Mesa, where he attended high school, Gilbert, Queen Creek and part of Phoenix.

He has been in public service since 1991, starting in the state Senate, where he served as Assistant Majority Leader.

By 1994, Salmon had been elected to the U.S. House of Representatives and staying true to a term-limit of his own making, he stepped down. During that tenure he served on the House International Relations Committee.

Salmon ran for governor in 2002, losing in the general election to Janet Napolitano.

He has opposed same-sex marriage and federal funding of abortions.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Salmon will “stand as an example for all those who currently serve or aspire to serve in public office on behalf of the people of our great state”

Arizona Senate President Andy Biggs, of Gilbert, will run for Salmon’s seat.

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