Lawmakers considering challenging DesJarlais in 2014 - WSMV News 4

Lawmakers considering challenging DesJarlais in 2014

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Congressman Scott DesJarlais hasn't been sworn in yet for his second term, but there's a lot of buzz about replacing him.

The congressman said he had no plans to resign and plans to run again in two years.

It is the scandal that has many people calling on DesJarlais to resign.

Court transcripts show that not only did DesJarlais, a medical doctor, have multiple affairs with patients and co-workers, he also supported his ex-wife's decision to have two abortions and tried to pressure a pregnant mistress to have one as well.

"I think the congressman's decision is 'Can I effectively represent the people that elected me?'" said Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam when asked about the controversy earlier this week.

DesJarlais told The (Knoxville) News Sentinel that he has no plans to resign and plans to run again in two years.

However, he could find himself with a long list of challenges from all over the fourth district willing to take him on.

"I can almost assure you he'll get a quality primary challenge," said Lloyd Daugherty with the Tennessee Conservative Union.

Weston Wamp, the son of former Congressman Zach Wamp, told The Chattanooga Free Press he's considering a primary run.

Wamp's not alone.

Cleveland-area state Rep. Kevin Brooks said Nov. 23 he's "praying on it and considering" a challenge.

"This week has been an incredibly humbling one for me and my family," said Brooks on Nov. 27. "Yesterday, we received a resounding vote of confidence from my colleagues to continue in my role as the Assistant Majority Leader for the entire Tennessee House of Representatives. I look forward to working with my peers to develop common-sense, conservative initiatives to continue to make Tennessee a better place to live, work, and raise a family."

"At the same time, I have received a number of calls of support and had many conversations encouraging me to run for Congress in the Fourth congressional district. While I am firmly committed to serving my constituents in the 24th District, I wanted to publicly say that I am exploring what a solutions-based campaign for Congress would look like and how I can best serve the great State of Tennessee.

"Given that, I plan to spend the next few weeks praying about the path forward with my family and talking with friends, neighbors and fellow Tennesseans about the future."

State Rep. Joe Carr of Lascassas said he's focused on his legislative seat but he's "going to carefully weigh what the options are and if the voters request it, I'll consider it."

State Sen. Jim Tracy also said he's getting calls from all over the 4th District asking him to run, although he said right now he is concentrating on his senate seat.

Some are hoping DesJarlais doesn't wait two years to bow out.

"I wish he would go ahead and resign now," said Daugherty. "He's not going to be effective for his district. He's going to be a laughingstock. He's making Tennessee a laughingstock."

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