Rep. Mark Green (R-TN-7) announced on Thursday morning that he will not be a candidate for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate seat opening up next year in Tennessee due to the retirement of Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN). Former Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam announced earlier in the day that he would not be a candidate for the U.S. Senate in 2020 which immediately generated speculation about Green’s plans.
Green made the announcement in a released statement:
“Since I was 17 years old on The Plain at West Point taking the Oath of Office to serve our nation, I’ve dedicated my life to serving the ideals of our great country, its people, and its greatest needs. Over the past several months, I’ve been honored and humbled by everyone asking me to run for the U.S. Senate. As Camie and I have prayed about how to best use our time and resources, I do not plan to seek election to the U.S. Senate in 2020.
Over the next two years, the most important fight for the future of our country is helping our President win re-election. The second most important fight will be winning back Republican control of the U.S. House of Representatives. I will be doing everything I can to help win these fights, and look forward to serving in a new Republican majority in 2021 with President Trump in his second term.
I am looking forward to continuing to represent the people of Tennessee by defending the Constitution and supporting the President, stopping abortion and protecting religious freedom, helping President Trump build the wall and end illegal immigration, standing with our troops and supporting our veterans, and stopping the threat of socialism from destroying America.”
Green has served in Congress since January, 2019 and was elected President of the Republican Freshman Class. Previously he served in the Tennessee State Senate from 2013-2018.
He is a medical doctor, businessman, and decorated Army combat veteran, having served in Iraq and Afghanistan during his service. His most memorable military mission was the capture of Saddam Hussein. During the mission, he interrogated Hussein for six hours. The encounter is detailed in a book Green authored, A Night With Saddam. Congressman Green was awarded the Bronze Star, the Air Medal with V Device for Valor, among many others.
After his service in the Army, Green founded an emergency department staffing company that grew to over $200 million in annual revenue. The company provided staffing to 52 hospitals across 11 states. He also founded two free medical clinics that provide healthcare to under-served populations in Memphis and Clarksville as well as numerous medical mission trips throughout the world.
Tennessee Star Political Editor Steve Gill said that Green’s announcement was a bit of a surprise, but the fact that he has already established himself as a leading conservative voice in Congress in just a few months demonstrates his skills in policy and politics. President Donald Trump has specifically pointed out his value to the Administration as a voice on Fox News and other media outlets in recent months, Gill noted.
“He would have been a leading candidate right out of the blocks had he entered the Senate race. Mark determination that helping the Republicans retake control of the Congress and securing the reelection of President Trump were a better allocation of his time and resources right now speaks to his willingness to put service to his country ahead of his personal ambition. It underlines his character and integrity.”
Dr. Manny Sethi has already announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination to the U.S. Senate. U.S. Ambassador to Japan and former Tennessee Commissioner of Economic and Community Development Bill Hagerty is expected to run for the Senate seat as well, according to many political observers. Congressmen David Kustoff and Chuck Fleischmann are also considered potential candidates as well.