GOP Candidate in House District 74 Faces Residency Questions

An organization calling itself the Common Sense Coalition on Friday unleashed a series of accusations against City Councilman Nick Steward, who is running for the Republican nomination to the State House, reports the Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle.
Among the claims are that Steward has misrepresented his place of residence in order to run for City Council, and again to run for House District 74.
Steward is running against Lauri Day of Humpheys County for the GOP nomination for that seat, with early voting starting Friday, July 13.
“It’s disappointing that my primary opponent and her surrogates would resort to mudslinging and personal attacks,” Steward said in response Friday. “You might want to be an adult rather than have someone else do your hatchet work.”
Day did not return calls seeking comment..
Similar claims have also been brought forward by Rep. John Tidwell, the Democratic incumbent in District 74
The claims are outlined by Neil Revlett, founder and chairman of the coalition, a libertarian-influenced group founded in the wake of the Tea Party movement. Day lists membership in the Humphreys County Tea Party among her affiliations.
Revlett, who ran as a Republican against state Rep. Joe Pitts in 2010, said he was sending his accusations to the District Attorney’s Office, as well as the Election Commission.
“I just hope an investigation goes forward, and we can get to the bottom of this,” Revlett said by phone Friday. “These rumors have been circulating for a couple of years, and it’s time he put these rumors to rest.
As reported in The Leaf-Chronicle in August 2010, Steward ran for the Ward 1 council seat on the basis of his residence being a rented room in the basement of then-Councilwoman Barbara Johnson.
At the time, he owned a house at 236 Short St. in Ward 5. He said he moved in with Johnson because he didn’t want to live alone while his wife was deployed in Afghanistan.
Steward said Friday, though, that he and his wife legally separated in spring 2010 and divorced about a year later. The Short Street residence belongs to his ex-wife, and he hasn’t “even been to her home” since he moved out.

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