But Fincher didn’t want to weigh in on the current social media spat between Corker and Trump.
“We’re not going to touch that. I wouldn’t dare get in the middle of that,” Fincher responded during an interview held Tuesday at the Sullivan County Courthouse.
Fincher is travelling the state from Mountain City to Memphis to hear what voters want in their next U.S. senator, and then he’ll decide whether to run.
He said he doesn’t really identify himself as a former congressman, but as a farmer, a small businessman, and a part of a gospel singing ministry started by his grandmother more than 60 years ago.
Fincher answered these questions:
You’re on a listening tour, so what are you hearing from people so far?
“The issues that people are concerned about, they want whoever is going to run for this seat to make sure they represent Tennessee and Tennessee values … common sense, pragmatic solutions that Tennesseans are worried about, including low taxes, jobs, the economy, fixing health care, but more than anything, they want a business person. They want someone who is not a career politician. They want a real person whether you’re in Bristol or Frog Jump, where I’m from.”
What do you want people to know about you?
“We are seriously looking at running for this seat because we want to make sure Tennesseans are well represented in Washington. People are telling me they want someone who is going to take our values, our common sense solutions to Washington and not forget who elects them, and that’s Tennesseans. That’s who is important.”
What do you think is the state of the U.S. Senate Republican Conference right now?
“We are trying to stay out of the weeds of that stuff and be about what people are telling us. … I’m going to tell you something they do say is, ‘Republicans need to get behind Donald Trump. They need to stop playing games.’ I’ll say this as well: His policies are exactly where we need to go as a country, whether it’s tax reform, whether it’s immigration reform, securing our border. All of these things are important. Tennesseans overwhelmingly, along with myself, voted for Donald Trump. Republicans need to man up and stand up for his policies. The more people I talk to (they say), ‘Stephen, we’re blowing a great opportunity here to make some real changes, real differences, why can’t we get something done?”
Fincher, 44, served six years in the U.S. House, representing Tennessee’s Eighth Congressional District. Both Fincher and former Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, a Blountville Republican, have endorsed U.S. Rep. Diane Black’s 2018 GOP gubernatorial campaign.
U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn has announced her candidacy to run for Corker’s seat in the August 2018 Republican primary.