The Maury County Republican Party held their nominating convention Saturday, and in a surprising twist, selected former Americans for Prosperity State Director and U.S. Senate candidate Andy Ogles to be the Republican nominee for County Mayor.
“Maury County faces major fiscal issues in the coming years, and I think I am the candidate to solve them,” Ogles told The Daily Herald moments after his nomination.
State Rep. Sheila Butt (R-Columbia), who is not seeking re-election in 2018, nominated Ogles for the office at the convention on Saturday.
“I have worked with Andy Ogles on several issues over the past few years. I was delighted when he and his family chose to move to Maury County several years ago,” Butt told The Tennessee Star in an exclusive statement, adding:
Andy understands the issues facing our community and the process of governing. He understands budgets and taxes. He understands the importance of a community being financially sound and meeting the needs of a growing population. There are challenges ahead for Maury County. We are in the process at the State level of passing a Private Act that will help with the accountability and the transparency of our County budget. There are real problems that need to be addressed. Andy has the expertise and the professionalism to help the Maury County Commission navigate the changes that will need to be made for our future prosperity in the next few years. I know him to be a God-fearing family man who wants the best for his family and Maury County.
In September 2017, Ogles resigned as American for Prosperity’s state director and launched a challenge to incumbent Senator Bob Corker. When Corker initially decided he would not seek re-election in November, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN-07) launched her campaign for the now open seat. Ogles withdrew from the race shortly after and threw his support to Blackburn.
This year is the first time the Maury County Republicans selected their candidate in a nominating convention instead of a primary. Registered voters with a record of casting ballots in three of the last four elections were eligible to participate.
The result, notes Chairman Scott Cepicky, is a state record-making turn out of 122 voters.
“The main reason we’re here is that it matters who we elect,” Cepicky told the Herald. “It matters who spends taxpayer dollars. As Republicans, we stand for smaller, more efficient government, fewer taxes and few regulations.”
Ogles is not the sole candidate in the running for County Mayor. He will face at least three other candidates in the general election August 2, including incumbent County Mayor Charlie Norman, County Commissioner Sonny Shackleford and U.S. Army veteran Amanda Kelton.