NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Governor Bill Haslam has officially announced he will not be running for Senate in 2018.
“While Crissy and I will always be grateful for all of the encouragement and support to run for the United States Senate, I am announcing today that I will not be a candidate for Senate in 2018,” the governor wrote.
He went on to state he wants to spend his remaining time in office focusing wholeheartedly on his current job as opposed to running a campaign.
“I know that being a candidate for the Senate during my last 15 months as governor would be a distraction from the task at hand. And while I have loved being a mayor and governor, I don’t feel the same call to run for Senate at this point,” Haslam added.
Haslam has served the people of Tennessee for 15 years and stated he would be most “helpful” as simply a private citizen.
My statement on the 2018 U.S. Senate race. pic.twitter.com/1pLR0MhSEd
— Bill Haslam (@BillHaslam) October 5, 2017
The announcement comes just a week after the governor hinted to reports he was at least considering a run for the seat that will soon be vacated upon Senator Bob Corker’s retirement. But he also said he was going to do whatever is best for him.
Before the decision, Senator Lamar Alexander and Senator Corker had reportedly encouraged him to throw his name in the ring.
The primary election is Aug. 2, 2018.