Sundquist Defending Haslam, but Not Endorsing Him

Former Gov. Don Sundquist says it’s too early for him to endorse anyone in the Republican gubernatorial primary… but then he says Bill Haslam has been unfairly attacked by rivals in the race. Hmmm.
So reports Georgianna Vines, who visited Don and Martha Sundquist at their Townsend home for an interview. Sundquist said he thinks a Republican will win the 2010 gubernatorial race, if the GOP candidates don’t beat up on each other in the primary.
Along those lines, Sundquist says criticism of Knoxville Mayor Haslam for refusal to release financial information about his income from Pilot Corp. – leveled by Bill Gibbons and Zach Wamp – was “uncalled for and unnecessary.”
Sundquist thinks the amount of information that Haslam has provided is appropriate.
“We’ve got to look back. The Kennedys had trust funds that no one ever complained about,” he said. In Haslam’s case, he disclosed a significant amount of charitable donations for which he should be praised, not criticized, Sundquist said.
“I’m not trying to protect Haslam. He can take care of himself,” he said.
Of course, an endorsement from Sundquist might not be all that helpful in some quarters. As noted in the article, there’s still some unhappiness with his unsuccessful push for a state income tax – something that, as Sundquist notes, no gubernatorial candidate, Democrat or Republican, supports these days.

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