POLITICS
10/26/2011 04:55 pm ET | Updated Dec 26, 2011

John Olver Retiring: Massachusetts Congressman Announces He Won't Seek Re-Election

John Olver (D), a 75-year-old congressman from Massachusetts, has announced he won't seek reelection.

His decision follows news that the state will lose one of its 10 congressional districts in 2012 due to redistricting.

A longtime Democrat, Olver had served Masschusettes' 1st district for over 20 years and until recently had planned to run for re-eleection.

As the Boston Globe's Glen Johnson pointed out, the 75-year-old's retirement prevents a showdown between elected officials.

"[Olver's] far-western district had faced combination with one of two nearby districts," he said in a tweet.

The National Journal reports family issues may have also influenced the longtime congressman's decision. In late March, his wife was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

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