WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Illinois, who stepped down from his Republican leadership post but remained in Congress when Democrats took back control of Congress in November 2006, announced Friday that he will not seek another term in 2008.
Hastert told supporters that he thought Congressional efforts to keep America safe after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks will ultimately prove to be the most important actions of the Republican-controlled Congress he helped to lead.
“On that dark day for our nation, Congressional leaders vowed to do whatever was necessary to protect our citizens from future attacks,” he said from the steps of the Kendall County Courthouse. “And, that is exactly what we did.”
Hastert’s decision to step down was not a surprise and opens up a seat in this Illinois district that is likely to be contested by Democrats.
- CNN Associate Producer Martina Stewart