RALEIGH -- Rep. Mickey Michaux, who currently is North Carolina's longest-serving state legislator, says he won't seek re-election this fall.

The Democrat from Durham first joined the House in 1973. The 87-year-old attorney announced on the House floor Thursday he won't seek a 21st two-year term.

Michaux was a civil rights activist during the 1960s. While in the House, Michaux served as senior budget chairman and a host of other leadership positions. He fought to preserve voting rights protections and warned against changes to election laws he said would harm black voters.

Michaux left the House when he became a U.S. attorney in the late 1970s and later ran unsuccessfully for Congress. He returned to the House in 1985.

Michaux didn't give a specific reason for his decision. Candidate filing starts Monday.