Kansas judge whose tweets sank higher court bid to step down

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Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly, left, announces the nomination of Labette County District Judge Jeffry Jack for the state Court of Appeals. (AP Photo/John Hanna, File) Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly, left, announces the nomination of Labette County District Judge Jeffry Jack for the state Court of Appeals. (AP Photo/John Hanna, File)
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -

A Kansas trial-court judge whose past political tweets sank his nomination for a higher court has announced that he will step down from the bench early next year.

Labette County District Judge Jeffry Jack said Friday that he will retire Jan. 2 and take a job as a regional director for Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly nominated Jack in March to fill a Kansas Court of Appeals vacancy. But his nomination was doomed in the Republican-controlled Senate within days when tweets from Jack in 2017 surfaced. The tweets criticized President Donald Trump and other Republicans.

The Senate later voted 38-0 against Jack's confirmation, forcing Kelly to nominate another candidate.

Jack has been a district judge since 2005 and previously served in the Kansas House as a Republican.