NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's Republican leaders were keeping any presidential primary endorsements to themselves as the state wrapped up the final day of early voting Tuesday.
Republican Gov. Bill Haslam told reporters that there's a "good chance" he will make an endorsement before the March 1 primary but that he wasn't yet ready to announce it.
The race has gained "some clarity" after the Republican primary in South Carolina on Saturday, Haslam said.
"We're in the middle of conversations, and I will decide that this week with the Tennessee primary on Tuesday," the governor said.
U.S. Sen. Bob Corker told reporters a day earlier that he's not made a presidential endorsement before a primary since the late Fred Thompson of Tennessee ran in 2008. But Corker acknowledged that he's been having "multiple discussions" about a possible endorsement.
"This state is a great state — so different than so many of my friends in Washington who haven't spent time here know it to be," Corker said. "It's a wonderful state of people who make up their own minds, and I don't know how much benefit or detriment it is for public officials like me to even weigh in on things like this."
More than 214,000 people voted through Saturday, with about two out of three ballots cast in the Republican primary.
About one-third of ballots were cast early in Tennessee's presidential primary in 2008 and 2012.