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Rep. Pat Tiberi Will Quit Congress Early

Rep. Pat Tiberi announced Thursday morning that he will resign from the U.S. House by January 31, 2018, taking a position with the private Ohio Business Roundtable.

WOSU's Clare Roth and Mike Thompson discuss Tiberi's resignation.

"I have been presented with an opportunity to lead the Ohio Business Roundtable that will allow me to continue to work on public policy issues impacting Ohioans while also spending more time with my family," Tiberi said in his statement. "Leaving Congress is not a decision I take lightly but after a lot of consideration, it is the best one for me, my wife, Denice, and our four wonderful daughters."

Tiberi, a Genoa Township Republican who has represented Ohio's 12th Congressional district since 2000, is a member of the House Ways and Means Committee and leader of the Joint Economic Committee. 

In a statement Thursday afternoon, House speaker Rep. Paul Ryan thanked Tiberi for his service and said he "brought great decency and relentless passion to this House."

The Ohio Business Roundtable is a collection of Ohio CEOs that advocates for changes to the state's economic policies. Tiberi takes over from Roundtable founder and current president Richard A. Stoff, who announced his retirement earlier this year.

"Congressman Tiberi's tenure in the Ohio statehouse, his time in the U.S. Congress and his position on the House Committee on Ways and Means, have given him a deep insight into the needs of Ohio businesses and the legislative and regulatory matters we face," said chair Gary R. Heminger in a statement.

According to The Columbus Dispatch, Tiberi was pushed to leave Congress by several factors: The health of his family, his lost campaign to chair the Ways and Means Committee, and the retirement of his close ally Speaker John Boehner.

"A dysfunctional political environment in Washington made him 'miserable' said a source close to Tiberi," The Dispatch reports.

Congressional Republicans have seen a number of high-profile resignations and early retirements, including Tennessee's Sen. Bob Corker and Pennsylvania's Rep. Charlie Dent, who have both expressed frustration about President Trump's leadership.

Last month, Tiberi became chair of the newly-formed Republican Main Street Caucus, which looked to serve as a counterweight to some of the House's more radical conservative members. 

Tiberidecided earlier this year tonot challengeSen. Sherrod Brown for his U.S. Senate seat, paving the way for state treasurer Josh Mandel - who is running as an ultra-conservative - to face Brown again.

"As the son of Italian immigrants, I am forever grateful for the opportunity my parents gave me by coming to America and raising our family in Ohio," Tiberi said in his announcement. "It was because of their pursuit of the American Dream that made it possible for me to serve 17 years in the halls of Congress representing my home. This truly is the greatest country in the world."

Sen. Rob Portman called Tiberi "a dedicated public servant and a good man" and said he looks forward to working with Tiberi to pass tax reform.

Ohio Republican Party chair Jane Timken released a statement saying Tiberi "has served his constituents, the state of Ohio and the nation with unquestionable integrity and determination."

Tiberi said he has not determined his final date in Congress. His resignation will spark a special election for his reliably-Republican Congressional seat, which covers Zanesville, Mansfield and Dublin.

This article will be updated as the story develops.

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