19 lawmakers not seeking re-election to General Assembly

Lawmakers

By KATE COIL

TML Communications Specialist

Nearly 20 members of the Tennessee General Assembly have announced they do not intend to seek re-election for their seats this fall.

The candidate filing deadline for state office was April 7 with at least 19 lawmakers announcing publicly they are not seeking re-election.

At least four lawmakers are not seeking re-election are involved in ongoing federal investigations. Four legislators are seeking another office, two in a higher chamber of the legislature and two others positions outside state government.

SENATE

Four members of the Senate have announced they will not be seeking re-election to their seats in the fall.

Sen. Mike Bell, R-Riceville, will not be running again for his District 9 seat. Bell has represented District 9 since 2011. 

Sen. Brenda Gilmore, D-Nashville, announced she will not be seeking re-election to her District 19 seat. Gilmore has represented District 19 since 2019 and before that served in the State House for District 54 between 2007 and 2019. Before seeking election to state office, Gilmore was a member of the Metro Nashville City Council from 1993 to 2003.

Sen. Brian Kelsey, R-Germantown, will not be seeking re-election to the District 31 seat he has heled since 2009. Kelsey was indicted in 2021 by the U.S. Department of Justice for violating multiple campaign finance laws in 2016. Prior to serving in the state senate, Kelsey represented House District 83 from 2004 to 2009.

Sen. Katrina Robinson, D-Memphis, was ousted prior to the beginning of the General Session in January following a federal fraud conviction. Robinson had represented District 33 from 2019 to 2022. State Rep. London Lamar, D-Memphis, was appointed to Robinson’s seat for the remainder of the session and has announced she intends to run for Robinson’s seat in the fall, opening up the field for her House District 91 seat.

HOUSE

In the House, 15 sitting members have announced they will not seek re-election this fall, including Lamar.

Rep. Eddie Mannis, R-Knoxville, announced he will not be running again to focus on his Knoxville based businesses. Mannis was elected to the District 18 seat in 2020.

Rep. Mark Hall, R-Cleveland, announced he will be leaving his District 24 seat to run for the state senate. Hall has represented District 24 since 2019 and prior to that served on the Bradley County Commission from 2006 to 2014.

Rep. Robin Smith, R-Hixson, resigned earlier this year after pleading guilty to federal charges. Smith had represented District 26 since 2018. Prior to that, she served as chair of the Tennessee Republican Party from 2007 to 2009. Rep. Greg Martin, R-Hixson, was appointed to fill her seat in the interim and has announced he will be running for the seat in the fall. Martin previously served as a Hamilton County commissioner.

Rep. Kent Calfee, R-Kingston, will not be seeking re-election to the District 32 seat he has held since 2013. Prior to that, Calfee served for 20 years as a Roane County commissioner.

Rep. Jerry Sexton, R-Bean Station, will be not seeking re-election after serving in the District 35 seat since 2015.

Rep. Mike Stewart, D-Nashville, will not seek re-election to the District 52 seat he has held since 2009. Stewart said he intends to shift his energy to “protecting America’s democratic system.”

Rep. Jason Potts, D-Nashville, will also not be seeking another term representing District 59. Potts has held the seat since 2018 and said that stress and low pay contributed to his decision to not seek another term. Potts previously served two terms on the Metro Nashville City Council.

Rep. Brandon Ogles, R-Franklin, will not be running again for the District 61 seat. Ogles has held the seat since 2018.

Rep. Glen Casada, R-Franklin, will not be running again for his District 63 seat. The former Speaker of the House is presently under federal investigation but has also filed paperwork to run for Williamson County clerk.

Rep. Jason Hodges, D-Clarksville, announced he will not run again for the District 67 seat. Hodges was first elected to the seat in 2018. Prior to that, he served on the Montgomery County Commission from 2014 to 2018.

Rep. Michael Curcio, R-Dickson, will not be seeking re-election to the District 69 seat. Curcio was first elected to the seat in 2016, and said he is leaving the State House to focus on his family and business.

Rep. David Byrd, R-Waynesboro, announced he would not seek re-election to District 71. Byrd spent eight months in the hospital with COVID-19 and required a liver transplant as a result in 2021.

Rep. Bruce Griffey, R-Paris, has announced he will not be seeking his District 75 seat in order to run for circuit judge for the 24th judicial district. Griffey has held the District 75 seat since 2018. He has previously served as both an assistant district attorney and an assistant Tennessee attorney general.

Rep. Curtis Halford, R-Dyer, will not be seeking re-election to the District 79 seat. Halford has represented the district since 2009. Prior to that, he served on the Gibson County Commission.