NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - It was a tough primary election, but now the real work begins for the remaining candidates in the gubernatorial race.
Bill Haslam, who won the Republican primary last night, is back on the campaign trail today working the phones and in meetings with top staff.
"Today will be packed actually had a planning staff meeting this morning," Haslam said. "Most of the day on the phone, another planning meeting for this weekend."
The Knoxville mayor won the Republican primary last night with 47 percent of the vote. His opponents - U.S. Congressman Zach Wamp and Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey - have reached out to him with their support.
"Those are hard phone calls to make, but they were very gracious and I look forward to working with both of them."
Haslam now faces Democratic nominee Mike McWherter. He says one of the main differences between McWherter and him is Haslam's public service.
"I also think the 6-and-a-half to 7 years I spent as mayor is great preparations to be governor because the jobs are similar," according to Haslam.
The 52-year-old nominee will be crossing the state during the next few months, he says, working harder than ever to gain voters; and he likens the remaining election to running a marathon.
"You don't run 24 miles really hard to say forget the last two and that's where we are right now," Haslam said. "We're gonna run really hard and it matters who we select as our next governor."
Next week, Haslam will do a fly-around in certain parts of the state. He plans to meet and recruit supporters in Knoxville on Monday.