Bob Johnson won’t challenge U.S. Senator Blanche Lincoln

Senate President Bob Johnson says he won’t challenge U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln in the Democratic primary in May.

Johnson told reporters on Thursday that he’s decided against running against Lincoln — a Democrat seeking a third term. Johnson is a former House speaker from Bigelow and says he’s decided his family is more important than a Senate run.

Johnson said in August he was considering the race.

Lincoln faces a tough re-election bid with eight Republicans saying they’re seeking the GOP nomination to challenge her. Lt. Gov. Bill Halter has also been mentioned as a potential challenger to Lincoln in the Democratic primary.

Johnson spoke to reporters after the Legislature wrapped up its first fiscal session.