State Rep. Andy Holt is considering running for Bob Corker’s U.S. Senate seat next year.
Corker has not said yet whether he will seek a third term, but Holt believes that if Corker does run as expected, there should be “a more conservative option.”
“Somebody’s got to do it,” Holt told The Tennessee Star on Thursday.
And that somebody – or one of them – might be Holt, though he’s still in the early stages of deciding whether to enter the race.
Corker is vulnerable, according to a new poll released by The Star and conducted by Triton Polling and Research. Only 41 percent of likely Tennessee Republican primary voters said Corker “deserves re-election.”
Corker, who sometimes supports President Trump and is at other times critical, recently said Trump is “out of control” and the “White House is in a downward spiral.” The poll showed that only 20 percent of likely Republican primary voters agreed.
Holt (R-Dresden) pointed to Corker’s key role in pushing former President Obama’s Iran nuclear deal through Congress as one reason why Corker must go. But he said a lot of the problems with Corker stem not from what he is doing, but what he’s not doing.
Corker, along with too many other politicians, aren’t seriously addressing the national debt but instead are acting like they’ve been “absolved from economic reality,” Holt said.
Holt said that as a U.S. senator, he would also focus on securing the nation’s borders.
The 35-year-old Holt, who is a married father of six children age 9 and under, was first elected to the Tennessee House of Representatives when he was 28. He is a farmer and adjunct instructor of government, business and economics at Bethel University. He also runs an auction company with his father-in-law.
In the House this year, Holt voted against the state budget for the fiscal year starting July 1. The budget totaled $37 billion, up from $28 billion when Holt first took office.
“That’s unsustainable and it can’t continue,” he said.
Holt said Trump’s election to the White House shows that people are looking for candidates who are nontraditional. With his outspoken ways, Holt considers himself atypical.
“I’m not afraid to call a spade a spade,” he said.