Iowa Republican Bill Northey turns down Senate bid

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey says he will not seek the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Democrat Tom Harkin.

The two-term Republican Northey announced Thursday he can be “more effective serving Iowans as secretary of agriculture.”

Northey is the latest in a series of better-known Iowa Republicans to turn down a run for the seat Harkin has held since 1984. Congressman Tom Latham opted against it in February. Lieutenant Gov. Kim Reynolds said no last month.

Congressman Steve King is weighing a run for the seat in 2014, but he has raised little of the millions of dollars it would take to wage a campaign.

Congressman Bruce Braley is the only Democrat in the race. He has raised more than $1 million and been endorsed by Harkin.

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