Jim Cooper has been a United States House of Representatives member for many years over separate stints. Each time, he has represented a district in Tennessee.

A Democrat, Cooper, was originally elected from the state's 4th District. After some time away from Congress, Cooper has more recently held a seat from its 5th District. A new round of redistricting has apparently driven Cooper to decide on his career.

Announces retirement from the U.S. House of Representatives

As reported by The Hill and CNN, Jim Cooper is not running for re-election in 2022.

His current District has been heavily affected by a recent re-drawing of Tennessee's Congressional district boundaries. If Cooper has decided to run again, he will face an uphill climb to win another term. The boundaries of his new would-be constituency surround a heavily Republican-leaning area. He is making the odds long for pretty much any Democrat to win.

Cooper was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1982, shortly after Tennessee's 4th District was drawn up. He would go on to win another five terms in that District.

In 1994, a special United States Senate election was being held in Tennessee. Democrat Harlan Mathews held the Senate seat being contested. The election was triggered after Democrat Al Gore resigned from it to become vice president of the United States.

Mathews was not running to keep the seat.

Cooper won the Democratic nomination for the special Senate election. However, 1994 would be a dominant year for Republicans in Tennessee. Cooper lost to the Republican nominee, actor and lawyer Fred Thompson in a rout. Thompson would go on twice to become chairman of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee.

In the open race for the 4th District, a Republican also prevailed in U.S. Air Force Gulf War veteran Van Hilleary.

After losing the Senate race, Cooper joined the Owen Graduate School of Management faculty at Vanderbilt University. In 2002, Democratic incumbent Bob Clement did not run for re-election from Tennessee's 5th District.

He was choosing instead to seek election to the U.S. Senate. Clement ultimately lost to Republican Lamar Alexander, a former governor of Tennessee and U.S. education secretary. Jim Cooper, however, would win the race to succeed Clement in the 5th District.

A moderate, Cooper is a member of the centrist Blue Dog Coalition and New Democrat Coalition. Currently, he chairs the Strategic Forces Subcommittee of the House Committee on Armed Services.

Is a member of a high-profile political family

Jim Cooper's grandfather, William Prentice Cooper, was the Tennessee House of Representatives speaker. He'd also been mayor of Shelbyville in central Tennessee.

Jim's father, Prentice, had a career that included serving as governor of Tennessee and U.S.

ambassador to Peru. Currently, Jim's brother, John, is the mayor of Nashville, Tennessee. John Cooper's other jobs in politics have included being a campaign staffer for Louisiana politician Buddy Roemer.

In 1985, Jim married ornithologist, Martha Bryan Hays. They would have three children. Martha died in 2021 from Alzheimer's disease.