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Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples To Resign

Tamir Kalifa
Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples talked with the Texas Tribune's Evan Smith during a TribLive event in 2013.

State Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples says he's leaving office to become president of the Texas Oil and Gas Association.

Staples said in a statement released Thursday that he'll step down sometime within the next two months. His departure was expected, following a failed bid for the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor.

His political career began as a city councilor in his hometown of Palestine. He went on to serve in the state House and then the Senate before becoming agriculture commissioner.

He received attention earlier this month when he raised objections to a school district pilot program that encourages kids to eat meatless lunches once a week.

Staples said the effort by Dripping Springs was part of an "activist movement" advocating a vegetarian diet for Americans.