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Oscar Goodman decides not to run for governor

Las Vegas Mayor makes announcement at press conference at City Hall

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Leila Navidi / Las Vegas Sun

Mayor Oscar Goodman laughs as he gives back microphones to television news reporters. Goodman announced he will not be running for governor of Nevada during a press conference inside his office in downtown Las Vegas Monday, Jan. 25, 2010.

Updated Monday, Jan. 25, 2010 | 3:08 p.m.

Goodman News Conference

Mayor Oscar Goodman announced he will not be running for governor of Nevada during a press conference inside his office in downtown Las Vegas Monday, Jan. 25, 2010. Launch slideshow »

Sun Coverage

Ending months of speculation, Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman announced today that he will not run for governor and will instead focus on promoting the city and improving its economy.

“It has been a great ride and I have 15 more months on this ride,” he said of the time left in his third and final term as mayor. “I’m going to keep myself busy for the next 15 months.”

Goodman, who has been telling the media for about six months that he is considering a run for governor, announced his decision at a press conference this afternoon in his 10th floor City Hall office.

The mayor reached his decision last night, he said. Today, a group of volunteers were to begin collecting signatures to place Goodman on the ballot and he said he couldn’t send them out knowing that he wasn’t going to run.

Goodman’s wife, Carolyn, played a major role in his decision, he said. Carolyn would not have moved to Carson City had he become governor.

“I would relish the race. But if elected I wouldn’t serve,” he said. “That’s what it came down to.”

He called his decision “irrevocable.”

Goodman and his wife changed their party affiliations from Democrat to non-partisan on Dec. 15, in a move some read as a signal that he was leaning toward a run for governor as an independent.

“I seriously considered the run to the point where changing my registration was making a statement as to my dissatisfaction to the way the two-party system was working,” Goodman said. “But I got to thinking what was important to my life. I love Las Vegas. This is my town. These are my people. They’ve treated me like a king, like a rock star.”

Goodman didn’t endorse any candidate in the field for governor. Nor did he name any of the candidates. He said he would endorse “whoever is going to protect the city of Las Vegas” and not take away any of the tax revenue used to assist downtown redevelopment projects.

“I wish whomever is the governor great success -- tey have a horrendous task and I don’t envy them,” he said. “I feel good about my decision. I feel like there’s a weight off my back.”

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