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      Former Congresswoman Ann Marie Buerkle won??t run for Congress again

      Ann Marie Buerkle
      Former New York Congresswoman Ann Marie Buerkle says she won't seek central New York's 24th Congressional District seat in the next election.

      Buerkle, a Republican, calls it a difficult decision "but the right one for me at this time."

      "Serving the people of Upstate New York in Congress has been one of the highest honors of my life," said Buerkle in a statement. "While I love Upstate New York and will always remain deeply committed to the people who live here, I have decided that I will not seek election to Congress in 2014."

      The announcement puts an end to speculation that Buerkle would seek a rematch with incumbent Democrat Dan Maffei. She defeated Maffei in 2010 by less than 600 votes, then lost to him in her re-election bid after one term in 2012.

      Onondaga County GOP Chairman Thomas Dadey, in response to Buerkle??s announcement, says the Onondaga County republicans respect her personal decision not to run. He says they ??fully expect to mount a vigorous challenge to incumbent Dan Maffei, who despite efforts to rebrand himself remains largely out of step with the hardworking, middle-class families of this congressional district.??

      Buerkle is currently serving as a commissioner on the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission. She was confirmed to the position by the U.S. Senate and officially sworn in last July.

      In a statement, Buerkle says she ran for Congress in 2010 because she "was concerned about the direction our country was headed" and says she made progress turning her time in office.

      Buerkle says she has realized that she "can be an effective advocate on issues from outside of Congress" as an engaged citizen and through her role as Commissioner at the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

      "The details of what exactly the future holds in that regard remain to be seen, but I am excited to see what the next chapter holds," says Buerkle.

      (Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.)