Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Karl Dean running running for Governor maybe.

By Joey Garrison, The Tennessean, May 31, 2016 - Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean traveled to Chattanooga and Memphis last week to talk to leaders in both cities as he explores a Democratic run for higher office, including a possible bid for governor.

In an interview with The Tennessean, Dean characterized these trips — and visits to other cities on the horizon — as educational and part of the process to determine whether to run for office in 2018 when two statewide seats are up for grabs.
He declined to say specifically whom he met with in Chattanooga and Memphis, calling them a “broad range of people.”

“I think for this calendar year, it’s a time for me to see whether I have something to contribute,” Dean said of a possible run for state higher office. “It’s an opportunity for me to learn more about the state and it’s also an opportunity, frankly, to see whether something like that is doable.That's really all I'm doing.

Dean, whose two terms as Nashville mayor concluded in September, is more frequently discussed as a possible Democratic candidate in 2018 in what will be an open governor’s race to replace Bill Haslam. In addition U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tennessee — who has received recent speculation as a possible running mate for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump — will be up for re-election the same year.

Following his time in the mayor's office, Dean has spent the past eight months teaching at Belmont University and Boston University, as well as chairing a new education nonprofit called Project Renaissance.

Other Democrats bandied around as possible options for governor include Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke.

The Republican list of possible gubernatorial candidates is considerably longer and includes U.S. Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn.; U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn.; Tennessee Economic and Community Development Commissioner Randy Boyd; state Sen. Mark Green, R-Clarksville; former ECD Commissioner Bill Hagerty; House Speaker Beth Harwell; Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris, R-Collierville; and businessman Bill Lee, chairman of Franklin-based Lee Company.  (link)

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