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      Former Amarillo Mayor plans to run for Potter Co. Judge, gets Ware's endorsement

      E ven though the November election for a new Potter County Judge is more than a year away, the race for the seat is already heating up.

      T he current Potter County Judge, Arthur Ware, told Pronews 7 he will not pursue re-election for the position in 2014. Ware's former Administrative Assistant, Nancy Tanner, is expected to announce her plans to run for the seat.

      F ormer Amarillo mayor Debra McCartt also plans to run for the seat. An assistant to Judge Ware told Pronews 7 he is endorsing McCartt for the position and supports her 100%.

      "I received a phone call yesterday from his office and they told me and it was just amazing," said McCartt. "I was so grateful for that because Judge Ware has done an amazing job for this county and he has been very aggressive. Not only has he done so much, but he's been a great mentor to be around."

      The endorsement didn't go over well with Nancy Tanner, and she said the following in a statement to Pronews 7:

      "Up until 12 days ago, Debra McCartt was backing me and gave me her word that she was not going to run for Potter County Judge. I do not know why she went back on her word.

      I like Debra and think she is a nice lady, but being a Mayor and County Judge are just not comparable. Given her past record, she not only lacks experience but she absolutely has no qualifications to be county judge. A year and half ago Judge Ware and his wife came to me and said that they would support me not only because I knew the job but also because they didn't want Debra McCartt to run. I truthfully did not expect an endorsement from Judge Ware but for him to endorse her after what he said last year is a stretch.

      I have a campaign team in place and will announce in early September one way or the other. If I run, I guess we will let the voters of Potter County decide?|do we want a famous name or do we want someone with experience?"

      McCartt said her experience will speak for itself, and plans to spend the next 15 months learning more about the judge's position.

      " I've signed up for some classes already and it'll be a little different learning curve for me, but I am ready for the challenge , " said McCartt. "I certainly know about some county government having worked with the counties on a state-level, as well as here as the mayor. Now I need to understand the intricacies and the details of what that involves."