Rep. Fincher to retire
© Greg Nash

Rep. Stephen FincherStephen FincherRep. Fincher to retire Export-Import Bank takes step toward renewal Transportation deal includes Ex-Im renewal MORE (R-Tenn.), who led the effort in the House to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank last year, announced Monday that he will be retiring from Congress.

In a statement, Fincher said he planned to spend more time with his family and western Tennessee business that grows crops such as cotton.

"I am humbled by the opportunity to serve the people of West Tennessee, but I never intended to become a career politician," Fincher said. "I will be returning to Frog Jump and my family and business, but intend to stay involved to the extent I can."

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Fincher last year joined with House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) to force a vote on legislation to renew the bank, which helps finance U.S. companies operatingĀ abroad, after GOP leaders refused to bring up the measure.

The coalition of Democrats and business-minded Republicans turned to a rarely invoked procedure known as a discharge petition to circumvent House GOP leaders under pressure from conservatives to shutter the bank.

In the end, a majority of Republicans sided with Fincher despite opposition from House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), whose committee has jurisdiction over the Export-Import Bank. It was the first time the House had voted on a discharge petition since 2002.

The Export-Import renewal measure was ultimately included in a five-year transportation infrastructure bill Congress passed late last year.

Fincher becomes yet another member of the historic Tea Party class of 2010 to call it quits after six years in the House. Fellow 2010 class member Rep. Reid Ribble (R-Wis.) announced over the weekend that he'll be retiring. Reps. Dan Benishek (Mich.), Chris Gibson (N.Y.), Richard Hanna (N.Y.), Robert Hurt (Va.), Rich Nugent (Fla.) and Scott Rigell (Va.) are also opting not to seek reelection.

With Fincher's announcement, a total of 22 House members will be retiring at the end of this year.

Fincher's district is expected to remain in GOP control after this year's elections.