Turner to remain as House Democratic Caucus chair

State Rep. Mike Turner says he will serve out his term as chairman of the House Democratic Caucus despite an earlier declaration that he would quit in January.

“I should not have let my temper get the best of me that day,” said Turner, D-Nashville, referring to a Nov. 2 Tennessee Democratic Party meeting where he announced he was quit as caucus chair after five years in the post and another year remaining on his current term. “I was extremely frustrated.”

“I’m still frustrated, but I’m going to serve out my term,” he said.

Turner announced his intention to exit following a dispute with state Democratic Chairman Roy Herron, in part over allocation of party resources. At the time, Turner said the dispute was “not anything personal,” but “my approach to what the party needs and where it needs to go is way different “I want a more progressive and aggressive party that more reflects probably the national trend and where Democrats are having some success in other areas,” he told The Tennessean then. “I think Roy has got a more traditional conservative approach.”

“You know me. I tend to shoot from the hip sometimes,” Turner told reporters last week.

Turner said he looks forward to helping Democratic campaigns for state House seats next year and believes minority Democrats have a chance at gaining seats against the majority Republicans.