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Intel committee head Rep. Rogers won't seek re-election, plans to start radio program

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Feb. 4, 2014: Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich., on Capitol Hill, in Washington, D.C. (REUTERS)

Rep. Mike Rogers, the powerful and highly visible chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said Friday that he will not seek re-election in the fall. 

The Michigan Republican congressman, who has been vocal on matters ranging from the overhaul of National Security Agency surveillance to the Benghazi terror attack, leaves after seven terms in office. In doing so, he's taking a pass on running for an open Michigan Senate seat. Instead, he told Detroit radio station WJR-AM he plans to start a national radio program.

"It's a pretty rare opportunity," Rogers said "They don't come around every day." 

In a written statement Rogers said he's been able, during his tenure, to turn the intelligence committee "into a true legislative and oversight body."

He added: "I had a career before politics and always planned to have one after. The genius of our institutions is they are not dependent on the individual temporary occupants privileged to serve. ... As I close this chapter in my life, I am excited to begin a new one that allows me to continue serving as a voice for American exceptionalism and support a strong national security policy agenda."

The 50-year-old former FBI agent has been a frequent guest on TV and radio shows to talk about national security issues. 

Last year, Rogers had said he would not run for the U.S. Senate in Michigan this year, saying the best way for him to make a difference in Washington is staying in the House. As Intelligence Committee chairman, he has a prominent role on American national security issues.

On Thursday, responding to public outrage over the National Security Agency program, the Obama administration on came up with a new program that it says would address privacy concerns and preserve the government's ability to fight terrorism.

A proposal from the leaders of the House Intelligence Committee, which also has bipartisan support, has some similarities to Obama's plan in that it would call for the government to query phone companies directly. However, Rogers' plan would not require prior court approval of searches.

Rogers has been in the House since 2001. He previously was a state senator from 1995 to 2000. 

Fox News' Chad Pergram and The Associated Press contributed to this report.