Longtime Rep. Howard Coble, R-N.C., will announce his future political plans at a news conference Thursday in Greensboro, N.C., according to an announcement from the congressman's office.
Coble's office declined to give any more details on the announcement — the 15-term Republican has long been the target of retirement speculation.
Coble, 82, has struggled with his health. Earlier this year, he was
Earlier this year, he was rushed to George Washington University Hospital from the Capitol to undergo emergency hernia surgery.
His lackluster fundraising has not dispelled retirement rumors, either. He raised $44,000 in the third quarter of this year, and just $4,000 from April through June.
If Coble retires, a long list of Republicans will likely surface as potential successors in this district that GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney carried with 58 percent in 2012.
Those Republicans include Phil Berger Jr., the son of state Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger, who has said he won't run for the seat until Coble retires.
Three other Republicans have already announced bids, including two Baptist pastors — Dan Collison and Bradley Walker — and veteran Don Webb.
On the Democratic side, former University of North Carolina administrator Laura Fjeld and Durham County Soil and Water Supervisor Danielle Adams have announced bids.
North Carolina's 6th District is rated a Safe Republican contest by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.