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Gone fishin': Salmon retiring from Congress, again

Mesa Republican Matt Salmon will leave Congress at the end of the year, he announced Thursday. This will be the second time Salmon has retired from Congress. Elected in 2012 and 2014, he previously served in the U.S. House from 1995-2001.

The congressman said "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, I 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," Salmon said in a news release.

Salmon lost the 2002 race for Arizona governor to Janet Napolitano. Before first entering Congress, he served two term in the Legislature.

The 5th Congressional District, covering the southeastern suburbs of Phoenix, is heavily Republican, and will likely remain in GOP hands.

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Salmon in 2014.