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Posted: April 1, 2013 5:03 p.m.

Douglas ends bid for U.S. Congress

Newton County Commissioner John Douglas said Monday he is ending his bid for U.S. Congress, just shy of two months after it started.

Douglas, R-Social Circle, was one of the first candidates to jump into the race for the 10th congressional seat, announcing in early February he would seek to replace U.S. Rep. Paul Broun, R-Athens.

Broun is seeking the seat of retiring Republican U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss.

Douglas said his decision was based on multiple factors, including the amount of time his commissioner position required and his recovery from prostate cancer.

“Being a County Commissioner has brought far more work and responsibilities than I suspected it would require. I cannot carry out my responsibilities as commissioner in a professional manner and mount a Congressional campaign at the same time,” Douglas said in a press release emailed to The News at Monday. “It’s time to ‘clear the decks’ and give the county commission 100 percent of my time. This ‘part-time job’ has proven to be anything but part time. I will remain a commissioner through these four years and decide at the appropriate time on a possible reelection campaign.

“Finally, while I completed my prostate cancer treatments just today, I still have the risk of unexpected news as I work to become a legitimate cancer survivor over the next few years. The radiation treatments have gone well, but there have been inevitable changes in my body that I have to accommodate,” he said in the release.

Douglas was elected county commissioner in November and had just begun serving when he announced his plans to run for U.S. Congress.

He said he needed to get an early start on building name recognition and financial support and also said he felt having a U.S. representative from Newton County would be a boon to the county.

“We had the beginnings of a great grass roots effort and had already generated support and commitments from most of the larger counties in the district. We were beginning to bring things together and make a strong initial start many months ahead of the primary and runoff,” Douglas said in his release.

He will continue to serve as a county commissioner through his four-year term, which will end Dec. 31, 2016.

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