Otis Sanford: Tennessee would be the ultimate loser if Corker doesn’t seek reelection

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A major political story is taking shape in Tennessee as we patiently wait to learn the political future of one notable member of Congress.

Senator Bob Corker remains uncommitted about seeking a third term. He simply won`t say one way or the other, and we`re less than 11 months away from the Republican primary. Either Corker is strategically trying to keep potential primary opponents off guard or he`s having real difficulty convincing himself that he wants another six years in the Senate.

If he decides not to run, it would be a huge blow for Tennesseans. Corker is a loyal conservative, but he has an independent streak that doesn`t always sit well with President Donald Trump or his followers. To his credit, Corker has been openly critical of President Trump, but news reports indicate that the President's former White House political strategist and ally Steve Bannon is now trying to become a GOP king maker. He's reportedly targeted Republican incumbents such as Corker and Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker for defeat in 2018.

Corker may not want to go through a tough primary fight even though he already has more than $7 million in campaign funds. Plus he may be tired of the gridlock in Washington, and quite frankly, tired of what he has called the dysfunction and instability in the White House.

Corker has represented us well. He is influential, knowledgeable and direct. If he does not run, Tennessee would be the ultimate loser.