Joe Carr formally enters 2014 GOP primary for DesJarlais congressional seat

Joe Carr formally enters 2014 GOP primary for DesJarlais congressional seat

May 2nd, 2013 by Andy Sher in Local - Breaking News

Joe Carr

Photo by Associated Press/Times Free Press.

MURFREESBORO - State Rep. Joe Carr, R-Lacassas, formally announced today he is running in the 4th Congressional District GOP primary next year, becoming the second Republican challenger to embattled incumbent U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais, R-Tenn.

"I am running for Congress because our country is in crisis and Tennesseans are hungry for strong, principled leadership," Carr said. "The only way to change the culture in Washington is to change the men. And women we send there."

State Sen. Jim Tracy, R-Shelbyville, announced in January he was running against DesJarlais.

Carr in December formed an exploratory committee to test the waters for a bid.

Both men have been critical of DesJarlais, who describes himself as "pro-life" but is fending off revelations contained in court documents from his 2001 divorce that revealed he encouraged a patient with whom he had an affair to seek an abortion in 2000 and earlier supported his then-wife's decision to get two abortions.

The 55-year-old Carr raised $205,000 during the first quarter and had about $192,000 in cash as of March 31.

His home base is Rutherford County, which became part of the 4th District in 2012 redistricting. Rutherford is the most populous in the district.

He is in his third state House term and is chairman of the House Local Government Subcommittee.