A Republican Presidential hopeful and longtime Texas Congressman has announced that he will not run for reelection for his Congressional seat.

Congressional District 14 Representative Ron Paul announced today that he will retire from Congress in 2012, and will focus on his Presidential campaign. Paul says he has received criticism in the past for serving as a congressman and running for President at the same time.

Paul, now age 75, first served as a U.S. Congressman for Texas’s Congressional District 22 in 1976 in a special session to fill the seat vacated by Robert R. Casey, who was appointed by President Ford to the Federal Maritime Convention. Casey had defeated Paul in the 1974 Republican Primary.

The new congressman was soon defeated again by Democrat Robert Gammage in the 1976 general election, but took the seat back in 1978. He remained the area’s congressman through 1984. He then chose to run for the U.S. Senate, losing to Phil Gramm. Paul then returned to private medical practice.

Paul first chose to run for President of the United States in 1988 as a Libertarian. He placed third in the popular vote in 46 states and the District of Columbia, behind Republican President George H.W. Bush and Democratic candidate Michael Dukakis.

He returned again to private medical practice until successfully running for the 14th Congressional District seat in 1996, defeating incumbent Greg Laughlin in the primary and Charles Morris in the general election.

Congressman Paul also unsuccessfully attempted to run for President in 2008 as a Republican.

He will serve as District 14's representative until the term expires in 2012.