published Thursday, December 13th, 2012

Chattanooga City Councilman Andraé McGary says he will run again


by Cliff Hightower
Barber Ronnie Etchison, left, and patron Vincent McKenzie listen as Andre McGary talks with patrons at Cut Creators Barbershop.
Barber Ronnie Etchison, left, and patron Vincent McKenzie listen as Andre McGary talks with patrons at Cut Creators Barbershop.
Photo by Tim Barber.

City Councilman Andraé McGary said Wednesday he would run for re-election to his District 8 City Council seat.

Residents who urged him to run persuaded him to seek a second term, McGary said.

"More than one person said, 'Please reconsider,'" he said.

McGary's decision contradicts statements he made when announcing his candidacy for state Senate as a Democrat. Then, McGary said he was done with City Council service if he lost the Senate race.

"No," he responded. "I will not run for re-election."

Republican Todd Gardenhire beat McGary in the Nov. 6 election.

McGary said his about-face was not a spur-of-the-moment decision.

Voter support and concerns about the other candidate in the race, Moses Freeman, prompted him to reconsider, he said.

"It was because Moses was in the race that people approached me," he said.

McGary said he has concerns about whom Freeman would be "beholden to."

Freeman, former Equal Employment Opportunity director and Neighborhood Services director for Chattanooga who is active in redeveloping the M.L. King neighborhood, said Wednesday he has many friends who support him and are familiar with his history of volunteerism.

"I didn't choose to run because my first choice didn't work out and I needed a job," he said.

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