Jane Cunningham
9:21 am
Wed July 6, 2011

Cunningham will not run for Congress

A Republican state senator from suburban St. Louis has decided to remain in Jefferson City.

Jane Cunningham had been pondering entering an already-crowded GOP primary to fill the Congressional seat of Todd Akin, who wants to challenge Democrat Claire McCaskill in 2012.

But in a statement released today, Cunningham said she doesn't run for titles, and wants to hold a position where she can have the largest impact defending conservative values.

"Through my legislation, including the first rejection of Obamacare in the entire nation (Proposition C), we’ve made great strides, but there is still much more work to be done. We need to continue to fight back against out of control spending, job killing taxation, and encroachments upon our freedoms from politicians here and in Washington, D.C."

Cunningham was a leading figure behind the Missouri Health Care Freedom Proposition, a symbolic 2010 ballot issue opposing President Obama's overhaul of the health insurance industry. She also attracted attention for pushing legislation that would have relaxed some child labor laws.

Attorney Ed Martin, who entered the Congressional race when Akin decided to run for Senate, called Cunningham a true conservative leader who would have been a strong member of Congress. Martin's primary opponent, former Missouri GOP chairwoman Ann Wagner, called Cunningham a "great friend and an effective conservative voice for St. Louis County in the Missouri State Senate."