Keeda Haynes withdraws petition to run for Nashville senate seat

legislative plaza
Posted at 4:51 PM, Apr 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-25 18:12:23-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Keeda Haynes — a Nashville attorney and former congressional candidate — dropped out of the race for Senate District 19 in the Tennessee legislature.

Haynes was aiming to take over Sen. Brenda Gilmore's seatafter Gilmore announced her retirement on the original candidate filing deadline.

Davidson County Election Commission administrator Jeff Roberts received her withdrawal letter Monday around 3 p.m. She didn't specify in the letter why she was leaving the race.

Haynes and Gilmore created a stir over the seat because their simultaneous announcement sparked an anti-skullduggery law in Tennessee that doesn't allow candidates to pass the baton on to whom they choose. Gilmore had originally given her endorsement to Haynes for the seat.

"I am saddened by Keeda Haynes decision to sit out this election because I believe her leadership would be a great asset for the city of Nashville and the state of Tennessee," Gilmore said in a statement. "That said, the torch will be passed and I encourage members of this community to get involved in this election and make their voices heard."

The qualifying deadline for the seat is noon April 28, with the new withdrawal deadline now May 2 at noon.

Haynes wasn't immediately available for comment.

Kyle Horan contributed to this report.