ST. PAUL  (AP) - A Republican state representative and Iraq war veteran who quickly gained renown as a freshman House member will step down after one term.

Rep. John Kriesel says in a letter to colleagues Thursday that it became a strain to balance career and family with legislative duties.

Kriesel was deployed to Iraq in 2006 for the Army National Guard. He lost his legs in a roadside bomb explosion and was not expected to survive, but by 2010 he was elected to represent a Cottage Grove-area district. He also works for the National Guard.

Kriesel gained statewide attention last year as the most vocal Republican opponent of a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. He is also a co-sponsor of the bill to publicly finance a new Vikings stadium.

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