Milwaukee County Exec. Abele says he "definitely" won't run for governor in 2018

MADISON — Democratic Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele says he "definitely" will not be running for governor in 2018.

Abele told The Associated Press on Thursday that he felt compelled to deny speculation he might run so it wouldn't impair his ability to work with both Democrats and Republicans in Milwaukee.

He says, "I am definitely not running for governor. Not that I ever made any noise about it, but others have."

Talk of Abele possibly preparing for a gubernatorial run has spiked since he hired former state Democratic Party chairman Mike Tate and the party's communications director Melissa Baldauff in recent weeks.

Abele was first elected in 2011 and is up for re-election next year.

Abele jokes that he might consider running for governor "if the capital is moved to Milwaukee."