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DES MOINES – Former Iowa Congressman Leonard Boswell said Monday he will not be a candidate for the Democratic Party's nomination in Iowa's 3rd U.S. House district – a seat he lost in a 2012 matchup with another incumbent, Republican Tom Latham.
Boswell, who turned 80 earlier this month, said "I have interest, but I have no intention" to make a run at returning to Congress. The Davis City farmer and retired military veteran previously served in the U.S. House from 1997 to 2013 until reapportionment after the 2010 census threw him and Latham into the same congressional district.
Boswell, who was at the Statehouse Monday as a co-leader of Gov. Terry Branstad's Home Base Iowa initiative to recruit military veterans to return to Iowa for job opportunities, said some Iowa Democrats have encouraged him to run now that Latham has announced he will retire when his current term ends in January 2015. However, he said "I don't see it as an option now."
Boswell said many of the issues facing Congress that he worked on – like the farm bill and transportation funding – are still fresh after a one-year hiatus from Washington.
But, he said he is satisfied with what he was able to accomplish during his time in public service and he will look for opportunities to continue to be involved such as the veterans' program the governor has asked him to co-lead. He also said he won't miss the "constant travel" that the congressional job demanded.
"There comes a time when you've just to step aside, and I just got helped to be pushed aside," said Boswell, who served three terms in the Iowa Senate – including being Senate president from 1993 to 1996. He also was the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor in 1994 with gubernatorial candidate Bonnie Campbell in Iowa.