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Moore: Congress "most exciting and frustrating" job I ever had

WASHINGTON –Congressman Dennis Moore released the following statement today:

It has been an honor and a privilege to have been elected six times to represent the people of the Third District in the U.S. House of Representatives.  I have decided not to seek reelection in 2010.  It is time for a new generation of leadership to step forward.

I am proud of all we have accomplished since I was first elected in 1998.  I have always sought to be an active representative, engaged in the concerns and activities of our community.

My staff of hardworking Kansans has resolved thousands of cases for constituents facing federal government-related problems and has supported my work in Washington.  I was proud to write and help enact legislation to increase death gratuity benefits for service members’ families, improved R&R travel benefits for service personnel and childproof cap requirements for gasoline cans.

And I successfully worked to bring over $190 million of targeted federal funds back to our district for things like flood control, improved transportation and social services.

I served as Policy Co-Chair for the Blue Dog Coalition for two years during the first Congress in which they were part of the congressional majority.

With the Blue Dogs and as a member of the House Budget Committee, I strongly supported fiscally responsible budgets and pay as you go rules.  As a senior member of the Financial Services Committee, I became chair of the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee, which this year has already held seven hearings on TARP implementation and ways to strengthen financial services industry oversight, and helped lay the foundation for comprehensive regulatory reform.

I have always taken this responsibility very seriously.  A public office is a public trust.  This has been the most exciting and frustrating job I have ever had.

Exciting because of the opportunities to do the right thing for our people, especially those who most need our support.  Frustrating because of the strident partisanship which too often distracts Congress from squarely addressing the critical issues of our time.

The current year has been the most intense and busy of my tenure.  We have spent long hours struggling over detailed, controversial and far-reaching legislative proposals to reform health insurance, control global warming, and stimulate the economy, along with financial services regulatory reform.  Yes, it is tiring.

But I have always sought to represent the moderate mainstream of the district, which I hope now will host a robust competition between the two parties to fill this congressional seat.

As the first Democrat elected to represent this district in 40 years back in 1998, I know that there didn’t used to be partisan competition in northeast Kansas.  This progress is good for democracy and important in ensuring that all voices are heard.

I will remain fully engaged in my job until the end of 2010 and anticipate a smooth transition with my successor.  My sincere thanks to the voters of the Third District, to my wonderful wife Stephene, our family, my friends, staff and congressional colleagues for making this unique opportunity for public service possible.