WASHINGTON Feb 13 U.S. Representative Doc
Hastings, a Republican from Washington state, said on Thursday
that he would not run for re-election in November.
Hastings, who was first elected to the House of
Representatives in 1994, becomes the 42nd U.S. lawmaker and 24th
Republican to announce plans to leave Congress.
"Last Friday, I celebrated my 73rd birthday and while I have
the ability and seniority to continue serving central
Washington, it is time for the voters to choose a new person
with new energy to represent them in the people's House," he
Hastings, chairman of the House Committee on Natural
Resources, said a desire to spend more time with his family in
Washington was an important factor in his decision.
He served in the Washington state legislature before winning
a congressional seat on his second try in 1994, when Republicans
gained a majority in the House for the first time in 40 years.