Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin announced Monday that he will not seek re-election to a fourth term in 2016.
"I've never seen politics as a life-long career," the Democrat said. "I ran for governor because I wanted to do what I could to give back to the state that has given me so much and make it possible for more Vermonters to enjoy the opportunity and success that I've been fortunate enough to achieve."
Shumlin, a former chair of the Democratic Governors Association, narrowly won in the November general election, besting Republican Scott Milne 46.4 percent to 45.1 percent in the solidly Democratic state. But because he fell short of the 50 percent threshold needed to win in Vermont, he was seated by a vote of the state Legislature.
The former state legislator said when he delivered his first inaugural address, he said his main focus was on "making Vermont's economy work for every single Vermonter and making their lives more secure.
"I had ambitious goals," he said. And other than publicly financed healthcare, he said he has helped put the state on the path to success.
"I decided to make this decision now because I want these 18 months in office to be focused entirely on continuing the work we have started together," he said. "We have a lot left to do. I'm excited to see this agenda through."