MT. JULIET, Tennessee — State Senator Mae Beavers announced Wednesday that she will resign her seat in the state legislature to focus on her campaign for governor of Tennessee.
Beavers (R-Mt. Juliet) said that she will deliver her letter of resignation to Gov. Bill Haslam and Lt. Gov. Randy McNally on Wednesday, August 30. The resignation will be effective Friday, September 1 at noon.
Beavers made her announcement at Mt. Juliet City Hall Wednesday afternoon. In a press release, which was given earlier in the day exclusively to The Tennessee Star, Beavers said she has “mixed emotions” about resigning but said she believed it to be the best decision for her and for her constituents.
By resigning now, a special election can be held later this year to ensure that Beavers’ 17th District has a “fully focused representative in place the day that session begins,” the press release said.
“I have always taken my duties in the state legislature extremely seriously, and I have concluded that it is simply not possible for anyone to run a statewide grassroots campaign while effectively serving during legislative session,” Beavers said in the release.
Beavers is known for her tenacious socially and fiscally conservative positions, which have attracted loyal followers as well as outspoken critics.
She has served in the state Senate since 2003 and previously was a state representative from 1994 to 2002. Before that, she was a Wilson County commissioner from 1990 to 1994.
A strong supporter of President Trump, Beavers received the most statewide votes as delegate during the 2016 Republican presidential primary and was chosen as chairman of the Tennessee delegation by her fellow delegates to the Republican National Convention.
“It has been a honor to serve in the Tennessee Senate for almost fifteen years,” Beavers said. “It is therefore with a heavy heart, but also with great excitement, that I resign my Senate seat and look forward to a new phase in my campaign to be Tennessee’s next governor.”
Beavers is also expected to announce key additions to her campaign team.
Other candidates for the Republican nomination for governor include House Speaker Beth Harwell (R-Nashville), U.S. Rep. Diane Black (R-TN-6), businessman Randy Boyd of Knoxville and Williamson County businessman Bill Lee. Candidates for the Democratic nomination are former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean and House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh (D-Ripley).