State Rep. Marc Gravitt becomes 17th incumbent to announce plans to leave a legislative seat

State Rep. Marc Gravitt, R-East Ridge, has announced he will not run for reelection to his House District 30 seat next year and instead will run for election as Hamilton County register of deeds, reports the Times Free Press.

He becomes the 17th state legislator to publicly indicate plans for a voluntary exit from the 132-member Tennessee General Assembly — a 12.8 percent turnover of seats apparently assured 15 months before the 2018 general election. (Note: This assumes confirmation by the U.S. Senate of President Trump’s appointments of Sens. Mark Norris as a federal judge and Doug Overbey as a U.S. attorney and House members proposing to run for their Senate seats.)

As with many things in politics, Gravitt’s decision to shoot for higher elective office boiled down to a few factors, including interest, timing, friends’ encouragement, belief in his ability to do the job and the necessary dash of ambition.

Incumbent Hamilton County Register Pam Hurst, a Republican, said she intends to call it quits next year after 24 years in the post. Hurst’s deputy clerk, Sheldon Wright, has announced he is running to succeed his boss.

Gravitt said that as “a real estate broker for 20-plus years, I know what the [register] office does.” And as a former East Ridge city council member and vice mayor, he’s always enjoyed serving in local government.

First elected to the General Assembly in 2014, Gravitt said that while serving in the House has been “one of the most rewarding and humbling experiences in my life,” his first elected post was at the local level and that’s where he’d like to serve.

And finally, there was Hurst’s plan to retire — along with several Gravitt friends urging him to run. “That’s the third part,” Gravitt said, “it becoming an open seat.”

One Response to State Rep. Marc Gravitt becomes 17th incumbent to announce plans to leave a legislative seat

  • Bob Miles says:

    Maybe he doesn’t want to see the embarrassment of losing his re-election after voting for a tax increase on his constituents.

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Former Knoxville News Sentinel capitol bureau chief Tom Humphrey writes about Tennessee politics, government, and legislative news.
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