State Sen. Dennis Parrett decides against run for Agriculture Commissioner in 2015

09/16/2014 01:32 PM

After months of mulling over a run for statewide office, state Sen. Dennis Parrett, D-Elizabethtown, decided over the weekend that he will not run for agriculture commissioner in 2015.

Parrett told Pure Politics in a phone interview Tuesday his decision came as a result of a number of factors, but namely the indecision he felt leading up to his final choice which he reached Saturday.

The first term state senator said while he is not one to have a hard time making decisions, the possibility of a run for the office was keeping him up at night for weeks, which he said was a sign to him.

“The indecisiveness was telling me that it was just not the right time,” Parrett told Pure Politics.

As for whether or not the right time for a run could be down the road for Parrett, he said he would not predict that but noted that the timing of the 2015 race was perfect but it just wasn’t right for him.

“The timing was perfect,” Parrett said. “And the reaction I got from people across the state was good on both sides of the aisle and I think I would have had the support.”

But, Parrett said, that he is comfortable with his decision to take his name out of the running adding that the concerns of the lifestyle change and the impact on family that a statewide office brings.

Another concern Parrett said he struggled with was the fact that he is the co-owner of a farm services business selling farming supplies, an industry regulated by the Department of Agriculture.

Parrett said he spoke with people about the business and what he considered to be a conflict of interest and while some said there were ways to make sure there was no issue, in the end he was not comfortable with the situation.

For now, remaining in the state Senate and helping find a viable candidate for the office are what Parrett told Pure Politics his priorities will be.

The race for agriculture commissioner will be an open race in 2015 as the candidates will be vying for a chance to replace Agriculture Commissioner James Comer, who is running for governor in the same election cycle.

Parrett would not say which other Democrats are eyeing the race but he did say he has spoken to a few individuals who have expressed interest and were waiting on his decision before moving forward.

Democrat Jean-Marie Lawson Spann announced her run for the office in June .

Republican Paul Hornback recently told Pure Politics he is also considering a run for the office.


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