Recovering Rep. Giffords to step down from Congress


TUCSON, A.Z. (WKTV) - Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords announced Sunday that she will step down from Congress, more than a year after being severely wounded by a gunman.

In January 2011, Giffords was the target of an attempted assassination in her home district of Arizona during a constituent event. Six others were killed in the attack.

"I have more work to do on my recovery so to do what is best for Arizona I will step down this week," she said in a video message posted to YouTube. "I will return and we will work together for Arizona and this great country."

According to Arizona media outlets, Giffords will attend the State of the Union Address on Tuesday as her last official act in Washington as a representative from Arizona.

Giffords will submit her letter of resignation later this week to House Speaker John Boehner and Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer. The governor will set the date for special primary and general elections to determine who will serve the remainder of Giffords’ term.

Before she leaves office, Giffords will finish her Congress On Your Corner event that was interrupted by the gunman in January 2011. In a private gathering in Tucson, Giffords will meet with some of the people who were at that event.

Over the past 12 months, doctors say that Giffords has made a miraculous recovery.

Giffords' office has been continuing her work over the past year. She has been absent from Capitol Hill except for a surprise return to vote in August on an agreement to raise the nation's debt ceiling.

Prior to that shooting, she had been considering a rising Democratic star, and had been considering a bid for Senate this fall.

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