PAINESVILLE -- Republican Congressman Steve LaTourette confirmed Tuesday that he will not seek re-election in November.
He made the announcement outside his office in Painesville. LaTourette will finish out the remainder of his current term.
The Ohio Secretary of State and other Ohio officials will be notified by LaTourette on August 8. That will set in motion a process involving seven county Republican party chairmen who will pick the person to run on the November ballot. That decision must be made by August 13th.
LaTourette said he was leaving Washington because of the lack of cooperation and the worsening political climate in Washington.
"Hate does not belong in the vocabulary of politics," said LaTourette.
He added Congress' failure to address big problems like the national debt and infrastructure needs was an embarrassment.
"We are a hiccup away from being Europe. The inability to "man" or "woman up" to that challenge is more than disappointing. .... The time has come for good politics and good policy," he said
LaTourette said being a member of Congress is about balancing the job and your personal life.
"The toll it takes on me as a person is now greater than what I can do, said LaTourette."
He said he was grateful to the people of the 14th District who sent him back to Congress for nine terms, as well as other elected officeholders in the district and his staff.
Multiple names have been floated to take his name on the ballot. . LaTourette said he would stay out of that selection process, but would offer an opinion if asked. He did not say what his future plans include.
He apologized for the timing of the event that put his party in a "precarious" position.
Some names include Geauga County Prosecutor David Joyce, former state lawmaker Matt Dolan, and U.S. Marshal Peter Elliott. Cuyahoga County Council member Jack Schron attended today's announcement and expressed interest in the job but stopped short of declaring his candidacy. Lake County Recorder Candidate Jason Wuliger also is getting some discussion.
Dolan e-mailed Tom Beres that he is coming back from the Olympics to put his name in contention.
Elliott told Beres he is not interested
The Democratic candidate running for the 14th Congressional District seat is Dale Blanchard, a Solon accountant.
Some think a Democrat has a chance in the new redistricted 14th District now that incumbent LaTourette is nor running.
Some Democrats talk of persuading Blanchard to step aside for a stronger candidate.
La Tourette said he was resigning now because there is a clear window to have an election. "I decided to jump out the window."
LaTourette had seats on the powerful House Appropriations Committee and TransportationSubCommittee.
He helped with many Northeast Ohio projects outside his district including saving jobs at DFAS.
Reaction to LaTourette's announcement to not seek a 10th term:
Rep. Marcia Fudge (OH-11): "Congressman LaTourette has always been a champion for his district and all of Northeast Ohio; a leader who preferred common sense and meeting the needs of people over towing the party line. We need more people like Steve who are gracious and willing to reach across the aisle. I will miss his wit and ability to get things done. His departure from Congress will be a loss to the Ohio delegation. I wish him well in his future plans."
National Republican Congressional Committee Chmn. Pete Sessions (R-TX): "Steve LaTourette has had an exemplary record of working toward common sense solutions that have earned him a reputation of delivering results for his constituents. His leadership on the Appropriations Committee has been invaluable to our Conference, and he will be missed. I join my colleagues in thanking him for his great work with our Republican team, and I wish Steve and his family all the best as they begin a new chapter in their life.
"Voters in northeast Ohio have consistently supported Republicans in this district, and I am confident that they will choose a Republican in November who is focused on getting our economy back on track."
U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio): "As the dean of the House Republican delegation from Ohio, Steve has been a leader for our entire state, and I have enjoyed working closely with him both when I was in the House and now in the Senate. He is a good friend whose results-oriented approach and expertise on issues important to Northeast Ohio and the nation will be missed by both Democrats and Republicans in Congress."