State Sen. Jim Kyle of Memphis, Democratic leader in the state senate, has filed with the Tennessee Registry of Election Finance for the 2010 governor's race.
Reached at his law office in Memphis for comment, Kyle stated, "I filed the paperwork and have appointed a treasurer that will allow me to spend money and raise money. I am proceeding towards an announcement late this month, as I indicated a few weeks ago. I'm walking that way, and I am still walking that way."
Former State Sen. Andy Womack of Murfreesboro will serve as Kyle's treasurer.
While we can expect a more substantive announcement later this month, Kyle's move will further change the dynamics in the Democratic primary for the 2010 governors race.
Already declared candidates are State Sen. Roy Herron of Dresden, Jackson businessman Mike McWherter, Nashville businessman Ward Cammack, and former State Rep. Kim McMillan of Clarksville.
That lineup features two candidates from rural West Tennessee, Herron and McWherter, and two middle Tennesseans, Cammack and McMillan. All of these candidates have been vying for dominance in their geographic base and were looking to Memphis Democrats to augment their support and campaign coffers. Memphis/Shelby County is a significant key to victory for any Democrat to win both the primary and general election campaign.
Kyle's entrance will force the other candidates to rethink their strategies in the Democratic stronghold, as he should get substantial support from his home base.
He was first elected to the state senate in 1983 and is married to Sara Perry Kyle, who serves as Chairman of the Tennessee Regulatory Authority and is also the niece of the late governor Frank G. Clement. They have four children, Sarah, Mary, Jim III, and Caroline.
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