UPDATE: Retiring Rep. Petri praised at final hearing

UPDATED: Tuesday, September 9, 2014 --- 3:43 p.m.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Congressional members who worked with U.S. Rep. Tom Petri (PEE'-try) for decades finally know why he was nicknamed Tim.

The Wisconsin Republican is retiring, ending a congressional career that began 35 years ago. His colleagues recognized him Tuesday at what was likely his final hearing as a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

Republican Chairman Bill Shuster of Pennsylvania thanked him for his leadership and mentorship. Then he asked how someone named Tom got the nickname Tim.

Petri says he was a Tom Jr., so people thought about calling him Junior, Buddy or Tom Two. When his grandmother noted he was small like Tiny Tim, his new nickname stuck.

The District of Columbia's Democratic delegate, Eleanor Holmes Norton, says Petri is retiring with the deepest admiration of Republicans and Democrats alike.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press

UPDATED Monday, April 14, 2014 --- 9:40 a.m.

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Wisconsin Congressman Tom Petri will make a formal announcement about his plans to retire after representing the 6th District for more than three decades.

The 73-year-old Republican will talk more about the reasons he decided against running again at a town hall meeting in Neenah late Monday afternoon.

Petri is a centrist Republican at a time when his party has been moving to the right, and he would have faced a rare primary challenge from more conservative candidates. He faced only two Republican primaries since 1996, and he had at least 82 percent support in each.

Petri spokesman Lee Brooks recently said the congressman would run for at least one more term. Brooks said last Friday the congressman's reversal was a result of "several factors" and that Petri would elaborate Monday.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press


UPDATED Saturday, April 12, 2014 --- 7:42 p.m.

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- The race to replace retiring Republican congressman Rep. Tom Petri just got a little more crowded.

State Rep. Duey Stroebel has been in the Assembly since 2011. He said Saturday he's running for Congress because he wants to bring strong conservative principles to Washington.

He says he was born and raised in the district and he's very much in touch with the needs of local constituents.

Petri held the congressional seat for 35 years. His office initially said he'd run for re-election, but the 73-year-old now plans to announce his retirement Monday.

State Sen. Glenn Grothman has already said he'll challenge Petri in a primary. Two other Republicans considering a run are state Sen. Joe Leibham and John Hiller, who has worked with Gov. Scott Walker.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press


Posted Friday, April 11, 2014 --- 3:32 p.m.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Republican congressman Tom Petri of Wisconsin says he will retire after more than 30 years in Congress.

In a statement on Friday, the congressman says he will make a formal announcement in his district on Monday on his plans not to seek re-election.

Petri is considered one of the more moderate Republicans in the House and was first elected in 1979. He has served on the Education and Workforce Committee and the Transportation Committee.

He has easily won re-election in his Republican-leaning district in east central Wisconsin.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press

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