WASHINGTON — Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., announced yesterday that he will not seek re-election to Congress in November, concluding his 14-year tenure in the House at the end of the year.

“The time is right to take a sabbatical from public life,” Davis, 59, said in a statement. “I have not yet decided what opportunities to pursue when I depart Congress. But it’s clear to me that returning to the private sector and reacquainting myself with that view of the world is the best move for me and my family.”

Last year, Davis was considered a potential frontrunner to fill the seat that will be vacated by the retiring Sen. John Warner, R-Va., but pulled his name from consideration for the position.

Serving as a ranking minority member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Davis supported legislation that would have removed federal oversight from the District of Columbia budget, a move D.C. chief financial officer Natwar Gandhi said could buoy its bond rating. Davis called that system “archaic,” and said the city “should not be held hostage by Congress.” The legislation is still pending.

Gandhi said yesterday, “I want to thank Congressman Davis for his solid leadership during his many years of service. He played a critical role in supporting the District’s financial recovery. Congressman Davis has been a strong advocate for the District and we have appreciated his efforts on our behalf. He will be missed.”

Davis also sponsored legislation that would provide $1.5 billion of federal money over 10 years to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority to help finance the development of a railway connecting the D.C. metropolitan area to Dulles International Airport. The bill was approved by the oversight committee, and is scheduled for general House consideration, although the viability of the project has come into question as federal officials suggested recently it might not warrant federal funds.

Prior to joining Congress, Davis served as the chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.


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