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CLEVELAND, Ohio — Rep. Dennis Kucinich has decided against running for Congress in Washington State.

“After careful consideration and discussions with Elizabeth and my closest friends, I have decided that, at this time, I can best serve from outside the Congress,” the congressman announced in a statement Wednesday.

Kucinich, 65, thanked his supporters who had encouraged him to run for an open Congressional seat in Washington State, but said he could “best serve from outside the Congress.”

“My commitments to peace, to workers’ rights and to social and economic justice are constant and are not dependent upon holding an office. They are dependent upon my continuing to stand up, to speak out, to organize, to motivate and to inspire our nation as to its deeper potential. This I promise I will do with great energy and heart,” Kucinich said.

Back in March, the Cleveland congressman lost to Rep. Marcy Kaptur in the primary battle for the new 9th District. Redistricting eliminated the 10th Congressional District, held by Kucinich since 1996.

The near 16-year U.S. House representative said he would complete his service in January “with the same passion and devotion to duty” with which he began it in January of 1997.

*To read the entire statement from Congressman Kucinich, click HERE.