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Ohio Republican to retire from Congress, citing gridlock
(Reuters) - Representative Steven LaTourette, an Ohio Republican, announced on Tuesday he will retire from Congress, citing the lack of compromise in Washington.
LaTourette, a moderate who has been in office since 1995, told reporters Tuesday that the partisan climate in Congress has put a strain on him.
"I do feel that the current climate has increased the toll that it takes on the person," LaTourette said.
Ohio Republican Party Chairman Robert Bennett said in a statement Tuesday that LaTourette is a "proven leader with a lifetime of service" who "will be missed by all Ohioans." Republican leaders must choose a new candidate for the November election.
LaTourette's comments echo remarks made this year by U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe of Maine, a moderate Republican who decided to retire, citing the "atmosphere of polarization" in Congress.
LaTourette's district stretches from near Cleveland to Ohio's eastern border.
Democrats could be competitive in the Cleveland suburban district in the November election, political analysts said. Republicans have a 241-191 majority over Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Three seats are vacant.
Also on Tuesday, Kentucky Republican Representative Geoff Davis announced he will leave Congress immediately, citing an unspecified "family health issue." He had previously announced he would not run for re-election in November but was expected to finish his current term.
(Reporting By Mary Wisniewski; Editing by Greg McCune and Cynthia Osterman)
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