The lone Democrat to voice interest in running against Gov. Bill Haslam for governor said he’ll stick to running for re-election to his West Tennessee House district instead.
“I’m committed to continuing as leader and trying to run for my representative position again. That’s what I’m going to do, I believe,” House Democratic Leader Craig Fitzhugh told The City Paper.
“I certainly hope that we can find somebody who will step forward because I do think some of the things that are happening in our state are not going the way that they could,” he said.
Fitzhugh told The City Paper in December he was considering a run for governor. A day later, bumper stickers began showing up in Legislative Plaza reading, “Run Craig Run!”
Since then, no one has publicly announced intentions to run against Haslam, a well-funded Republican who — as of May — enjoyed high approval ratings.
The governor since has been under fire for questionable practices concerning outsourcing contracts for everything from automobile maintenance for state vehicles to management of state buildings. The corporation the state agreed to hand over building oversight to, Jones Lang LaSalle, is a group the governor was at one time an investor in.
Fitzhugh said he wanted to focus more of his energy getting Democrats elected to the state House of Representatives, a body composed of a supermajority of Republicans as of the 2012 elections.