Senate District 18: Haile vs. Brewer

After winning a four-way Republican primary in August, retired longtime Gallatin pharmacy owner Ferrell Haile will face former Sumner County Democratic Party Chair and Hendersonville resident Maria Brewer in November for the Senate District 18 seat, observes The Tennessean.
For at least two decades, voters in the 18th state Senate district had always seen their incumbent representative on the ballot. But that changed in 2010, and for the second time in less than two years, the 18th is an open seat.
Voters in the district were subjected to a special election in early 2011 after the seat was vacated by former state senator Diane Black following her election to the U.S. House of Representatives.
Then, when the Republican-led Tennessee General Assembly redrew district lines this year, it was the GOP incumbent in the 18th who was the biggest loser: The new maps drew Robertson County into District 25, meaning current state Sen. Kerry Roberts, who lives in Springfield, was suddenly a resident of a district with a seat not up for grabs until 2014. That left the 18th wide open again.
…The two candidates differ on certain aspects of education policy. Haile said he supports the voucher system that is expected to be considered in the upcoming legislative session, arguing such a program would foster competition that would benefit both public education and teachers as a whole.
Brewer, however, does not support vouchers, citing as an example the budget battle between the Sumner County Board of Education and Sumner County Commission that delayed the opening of schools this semester.
“If you start chipping away at that with vouchers, you’re cutting into that broad base of support for public schools,” she said.

Both candidates said they are unhappy with the idea of virtual schools programs allowed under a law passed in 2011.

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