WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Representative Gregg Harper, chairman of the House Administration Committee, said on Thursday he would not seek re-election in November, becoming the latest Republican to announce plans to leave Congress after 2018.

 

Harper, 61, took office in 2009 as congressman from Mississippi's 3rd Congressional District and is serving his fifth term. He said in a statement he had discussed his retirement with this family over the holidays.

 

"I never intended for this to be a career, and it will soon be time for another conservative citizen legislator to represent us," Harper said.

 

As head of the Administration Committee, Harper drafted legislation to overhaul how Congress handles sexual harassment after a wave of women reporting abuse or misconduct last year brought down powerful men in entertainment, media and politics.

 

Other long-serving Republican members of Congress retiring this year include Jeb Hesnsarling of Texas and Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida and Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania.

 

(Reporting by Susan Cornwell and Doina Chiacu; Editing by Richard Chang)