HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle teased the supportive and the curious on Monday, promising to reveal his decision on a 2014 gubernatorial run on his website at 10 a.m.
When the time came, Battle released a statement explaining his decision not to seek the higher office this time around.
The elaborate pageantry led many to believe the highest floor at City Hall would see its fair share of empty days, as the chief resident hit the campaign trail.
But no – Battle will restrict himself to the local limelight for now.
Some might argue it’s because he didn’t think he could win on the state level, but he says he’s won on these numbers before.
“Oh, the polling showed the same polling numbers that showed when I ran for mayor of the city of Huntsville,” said Battle. “You had a name recognition of 13-14 percent. You had a long way to go with that. You had some possibilities, and you had some potential.”
Battle says he still sees too much to do here in Huntsville.
But he needs Governor Robert Bentley’s help for a lot of that — the governor whose job he almost tried take.
Any possibilities of bad blood?
“I don’t think so,” says Battle. “Governor Bentley has been very honorable through this whole process. He’s known that we have looked at the office. He’s known that we’ve polled on the office, but he’s also stepped forward and even in the midst of that done some good things for the city of Huntsville.”
So the dust settles here at City Hall. For now.
After all, Battle admitted, “I will continue to look at different offices in the future. I enjoy being mayor. I may stay being mayor. I may look at other offices in the future.”
Still, he insists all the drama around this announcement isn’t a practice run for next time.
“No, this is just a time to talk to the citizens of Huntsville, to tell them my future plans, because they count on me as mayor of the city of Huntsville,” Battle said. “And to let them know what we’re going to do with our government in the future.”
He did promise us one more thing. He’s content where he is for at least the rest of this election cycle.
“I have plenty to do this year being mayor of the city of Huntsville,” Battle said. “I will be right here.”