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Weller To Announce Retirement Friday

Republican Rep. Jerry Weller of Illinois will announce his retirement from Congress Friday during a previously scheduled speaking engagement at the Joliet Chamber of Commerce, a knowledgable Republican source said Thursday.

The congressman was preparing a formal announcement for October but has decided to move up the date of his announcement following news reports this week that he is planning to step down, the same source said.

Weller's wife was recently reelected to the Guatemalan legislature, and the strain of separation had taken its toll on the congressman, the source concluded.

The Chicago Tribune recently raised questions about a land deal the Illinois Republican transacted in Central America, and he was one of 13 lawmakers subpoenaed in an unrelated case by lawyers to indicted defense contractor Brent Wilkes in a case that goes to court next month.

Weller is the third Illinois Republican to announce his retirement this year.

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