Skip to content

Phillip Pinion not running for Congress

Phillip Pinion not running for Congress

Posted: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 8:59 pm
By: John Brannon Messenger Staff Reporter

 By JOHN BRANNON Staff Reporter Will there be a congressman Phillip Pinion in your future? No. The retired state legislator and Union City native son put all speculation to rest Tuesday with a formal statement to that effect. “I’ve decided not to run,” he told The Messenger. “After a great deal of thought and prayer and consultation wih friends and family, I have decided I will not seek the Democratic nomination for Congress to represent the 8th Congressional District of Tennessee.” Pinion, 57, represented House District 77 in the Tennessee General Assem-bly January 1989-November 2008. Since November, when Democratic Congressman John Tanner of Union City announced he would retire at the end of his current term, Pinion has been seen as a potential successor. “I would like to thank the hundreds of people who called me and encouraged me to run,” Pinion said. “I appreciate their support through the years. I will never forget the many kindnesses shown me during the time we were trying to make the decision whether to run (for Congress) or not.” He said he decided not to run for several reasons. First and foremost: His family. He gives an example. “It was a great honor to serve the people of northwest Tennessee 20 years as a member of the Legislature,” he said. “During that time, I missed a lot of quality time watching my boys grow up, missed being involved with them. I decided I didn’t want that to happen to my grandchildren. “I asked my 5-year-old grandson if he wanted granddaddy to go to Washington and be a congressman. His response was, ‘No, I want my granddaddy to stay with me.’” On top of that, he added, there’s his personal life. He is a consultant for a worldwide engineering firm and lives in Nashville. He returns to Union City weekends to visit his family here. “I realize I am very happy since I left public office,” he said. “I love my job here in Nashville. The opportunities and the future are very bright for me and my family. “Therefore, I guess you could say this was a selfish decision I made for me and my family.” He admits, though, he still feels the pull, the attraction, of public service. Throughout the period when he was trying to decide one way or the other, a thought kept coming back. “It was, ‘What about the people?’ The whole thing was about serving the people,” he said. “I think about the jobs we brought to Lake County. I thought about getting Highway 45 four-laned. I thought about interstate highway 69 and how (state Sen.) Roy Herron and John Tanner and I worked to get it. “I thought of the port at Cates Landing, the spillway at Reelfoot Lake, the many firetrucks that are now in rural fire departments. “I thought of all the things we worked on. These thoughts kept coming back. But in the end, I had to go with family. I owe them that much.” Published in The Messenger 1.20.10

Leave a Comment