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Secretary of State Tre Hargett participates in a meeting of the State Election Commission in Nashville in this 2011 file photo.

NASHVILLE - Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett says he's not running for governor in 2018.

Hargett was among several Republicans included in early speculation after the Nov. 4 election about potential candidates to succeed Gov. Bill Haslam, since Haslam can't run for a third consecutive term.

But Hargett, who is in the middle of a four-year term, found such speculation uncomfortable and issued a statement Friday saying, "I am not running for governor in 2018. While I am honored to be mentioned and thought of in this regard, I am focused on being the best secretary of state I can be and the best one our state has ever had. The people of Tennessee deserve nothing less. I would rather focus on what's now, rather than what's next."

To read more, visit The Commercial Appeal.

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