Earlier this year, I announced that I will not run for re-election to Congress. After 32 years in office, I will be leaving Congress next year. The outpouring of support – from new and old friends to New York Times columnist Margaret Renkl – has been heart-warming for me and my team.
I cannot thank the people of Nashville enough. You backed me more than almost anyone in Tennessee history, making me the state’s 3rd longest-serving member of Congress. You allowed me to help millions of people while representing our state capital, as well as 30 of our state’s 95 counties.
Despite my strength at the polls, I could not stop the General Assembly from dismembering Nashville. No one tried harder to keep our city whole. I explored every possible way, including lawsuits, to stop the gerrymandering and to win one of the three new congressional districts that now divide Nashville.
I am finishing out my term by maintaining a high level of service to all the 760,000+ people in Tennessee’s 5th congressional district. A member of Congress is only as good as his staff, and I’ve had the very best talent for almost 40 years. They are a joy and a blessing. Many have gone on to great careers inside and outside of government. My 600+ interns over the years are our future leaders.
My time in Congress is ending, but I can’t wait to start the next adventure. Thank you again.