Longtime Cook County Clerk David Orr won’t seek re-election

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CHICAGO -- Longtime Cook County Clerk David Orr says he won't seek re-election next year.

Orr said Wednesday "it's certainly not an easy decision" to step away after a nearly 40-year political career that included a brief time as Chicago's mayor.

The progressive Democrat was elected to the Chicago City Council in 1979. He served as mayor for eight days after the unexpected death of Harold Washington, Orr's ally and the city's first black mayor.

Orr became Cook County clerk in 1991 and is serving his eighth term.

Cook County Recorder of Deeds Karen Yarborough has said she'll run for clerk in 2018. Her office is set to be merged into the clerk's office in 2020.

Among other duties, the clerk's office oversees elections in suburban Cook County and calculates property taxes.

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