Harwell avoids rematch with Casada

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Republican Beth Harwell won't have to worry about a renewed challenge from the man she defeated to become the first female House speaker in state history.

Rep. Glen Casada of Franklin tells The Associated Press that he won't make another run at the chamber's top job despite the defeat of seven Republican incumbents in Thursday's primary.

Casada said in a phone interview he doesn't see the results as an anti-incumbent trend or a rejection of Harwell's leadership.

Casada was considered the favorite for the speakership after Republicans picked up 14 seats in the 99-member chamber in 2010. But Harwell, a former professor and state Republican Party chairwoman, won the caucus nomination in a secret ballot.

Casada said he may instead run for chairman of the House Republican caucus this fall.

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