Politics & Government

Jockeying to fill Kansas Rep. Moore's seat begins

Health wasn't the reason. Neither were politics and the tough votes he'd cast lately.

Instead, U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore said his unexpected decision not to seek re-election next year was all part of an earlier plan to serve for about 12 years.

"It feels like a tremendous burden is off of my shoulders," Moore told reporters Monday night at Kansas City International Airport after a flight from Washington.

Moore, 64, said he will discuss his decision more today at a 3:15 p.m. news conference.

In the meantime, the rush to be his replacement kicked into overdrive.

The Democrat issued a statement earlier Monday in which he called the job in Kansas' 3rd Congressional District "tiring" and added: "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."

The statement did not address speculation that his health might be a factor, even though a leading Democrat said some of Moore's friends recently had approached the congressman to express concerns about him looking weary.

Moore acknowledged he saw a doctor Monday morning, but was only advised that he needed a hernia operation. "Beyond that, I'm fine," he said.

Moore plans to complete his term, which ends in January 2011.

To read the complete article, visit www.kansascity.com.

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