U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler (D-Waynesville) on Tuesday ended speculation that he was considering a run for governor.
“I will not be running for governor of North Carolina in 2012,” Shuler announced in a statement distributed to media outlets. “It is an honor to even be discussed as a potential candidate for such an esteemed office, but now is not my time.”
Last week’s announcement by Gov. Beverly Perdue, a Democrat, that she would not seek re-election has led to wide speculation about who the eventual nominee will be. Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton and state Rep. Bill Faison of Orange County have announced they are running.
Many state Democratic leaders are trying to convince Erskine Bowles to run. He has held many posts, including co-chair of the presidents’ deficit reduction committee, president of the University of North Carolina system, and was a chief of staff for President Bill Clinton.
Former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory, who lost a close race to Perdue in 2008, is the frontrunner for the GOP nomination.