House Republican Caucus chairman Glen Casada is the most likely successor to Jason Mumpower. We asked Casada whether he wants the job.
"We've got to solve this budget and nothing else matters," he tells Pith. "We got to solve the $1.2 billion hole. Jason will be leader and we will cut our way out of this and we'll move on from there."
Q: Who will replace Mumpower?
Casada: Whoever the caucus wants to be majority leader, that's who I'm for.
Q: Will it be you?
Casada: If they want me to be. .. They'll talk and we'll talk and we'll all come to a mutual decision.
As for why Mumpower's quitting, Casada says: "Here's what he tells me, and I understand it. Driving 300 or 400 miles here and 300 miles back for 14 years, that hurts. He wants a child. They would like a child. They want to start a family. Can you imagine going back and forth 14 years? So it was just his time in life to move on to something else. He will be missed."
Here's Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey's take on Mumpower's announcement:
"I think he's just ready to move onto another phase of his life. He feels like he's achieved probably all he's going to achieve here in the state of Tennessee and he's ready to move on. Obviously, he wanted to become speaker and that didn't happen. Now that he's decided that's not the goal that he's after in life even if it was available to him--you'd have to ask him these questions but he and I have talked about this--and I just think he truly is 37 years old now, he's spent 16 years down here and if you're going to do something else in life, now's the time to get started."