He lost that race to Don Sundquist.
Democrats have recruited an A-list candidate to run for US Senate in Tennessee.
"We all know Washington is broken", he said in his statement.
He mentions the economy, health insurance, the opioid crisis and finances.
The governor himself considered a Senate bid in September, but later said that he would not be running because he wanted to "remain completely focused" on his current job.
Sources with former Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen are telling the Nashville Post that he will announce his candidacy Thursday morning.
Bredesen, who served as Tennessee's governor from 2003 to 2011, enters a race that already features one Democrat, Nashville attorney James Mackler, and two Republicans, U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Brentwood and former U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher, who is from rural West Tennessee. A recent Middle Tenessee State University poll shows that Bredesen is viewed nearly exactly as favorably in the state as Republican front runner Rep. Marsha Blackburn, and much more favorably than all the other potential Republican candidates.
Upon hearing the news, Blackburn released a statement saying, "Tennessee families want change and that is not what 74-year-old Democrat politician Phil Bredesen will bring to the United States Senate".
Bredesen, age 73, is a wealthy former Nashville mayor who was first elected governor in 2002.
She continued, "Bredesen's views are out-of-touch with Tennessee values, he supported President Obama's liberal policies, is against second amendment rights and even authored a plan to give illegal immigrants driving certificates".