Gov. Jan Brewer announces retirement from politics, will not seek third term

GLENDALE, AZ - Gov. Jan Brewer has announced she will not seek another term.

Brewer made the announcement Wednesday morning in front of a cafeteria full of students at Park Meadows Elementary School.

"There comes a time to pass the torch of leadership, so after completing this term in office, I will be doing just that," Brewer said. "While I will no longer be governor after this year, I will remain a proud cheerleader and champion for this awesome that I love so dearly."

Brewer ended months of speculation about whether she might challenge a provision of the Arizona Constitution that limits officeholders to two terms in office.

Brewer completed the term of former Gov. Janet Napolitano when she took a job in the Obama administration in 2009, then won a full term in 2010.

Legal experts say it would have been a long shot to challenge the constitution and run again.

Brewer is known for her conservative views but has also riled her more hard-line base. She surprised many by embracing a key part of Obama's healthcare overhaul law -- an expansion of Medicaid.

After a battle with Republicans who control the Legislature, she cobbled together a coalition of Democrats and a handful of Republicans and got the measure adopted.

About 300,000 more Arizonans are now eligible to sign up for the free health insurance plan.

Several other Republicans have entered the primary race for governor.

They include Arizona State Treasurer and former Cold Stone Creamery CEO Doug Ducey, Secretary of State Ken Bennett, Mesa Mayor Scott Smith, former GoDaddy legal counsel Christine Jones, state Sen. Al Melvin and former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas.

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