Senator Bob Corker opens up about decision not to run again in 2018

Senator Bob Corker repeatedly said he had only planned on served two terms in the U.S. senate.

Legislation may take a long time to pass in Congress, but other changes on our nation's capitol can happen fast.

Senator Bob Corker repeatedly said he had only planned on served two terms in the U.S. senate.

Now, he says he's ready to give someone else a chance to step in. The question is, what will he do next?

Senator Corker said Wednesday that he is not ruling out a future in government.

"If there's an opportunity for me to make a difference in some other way, I'm sure that I would look at it," he said.

Corker didn't specify which opportunities he is interested in, just that he's done with the role he's in now.

"You can make a phone call to almost everybody in the world, and they will pick up," Corker said. You can have influence over everything that is happening. It's a very difficult job to leave."

Last year, many speculated that Corker was on the short list to be Donald Trump's Vice President and Secretary of State.

Related | Corker retirement sets off Tennessee succession speculation

But, shortly after Corker took the stage with then Candidate Trump in North Carolina, Corker squashed the ideas.

"I think I'm probably better suited for other kinds of things," he said at the time.

That's one of the reasons Corker says there was a lot of pressure to run for Senate again, especially since he says he's in constant contact with President Trump.

"He truly just calls me sometimes to commiserate," Corker said. "I mean the guy he gets four or five hours a sleep a night and he's got this nervous energy."

Just last month, Corker made strong statements about the leadership of our country at a Rotary meeting in Chattanooga.

He said, "I will say we are at a point where there needs to be radical changes take place at the white house itself."

Wednesday, he again addressed issues on the nation's capitol, including a slow moving healthcare bill. However, he says it's not why he's leaving.

"Am I frustrated we aren't getting more done? Yes. Is that why I'm leaving? Absolutely not," he said.

Speculation has begun about the possibility of former NFL quarterback Payton Manning running for Corker's seat.

After speaking with the athlete, Corker says he thinks that's unlikely, but would like to see Manning take some sort of public office in the future.

When 104.5 The Zone asked if Peyton Manning would entertain a run for Senate, he said, “No. Zero consideration.”

"I certainly have an interest in politics and in our country. I just have zero interest in being a politician," said Manning.

Corker says when a committee-chair leaves, there's usually someone in line for the position. He says in this case, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee position would likely go to Senator Jim Risch.

Corker's current term lasted until the end of next year.

Watch the full interview with Senator Corker conducted on Capitol Hill Wednesday (in two parts) below:

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