Despite a report depicting Joshua Rawlings as the youngest candidate to seek election to the Tennessee Legislature (posted HERE), that distinction apparently belongs to J. Brad Martin , millionaire businessman who most recently served as interim president of the University of Memphis.
Martin, a Republican, was elected to the House on Nov. 7, 1972 – two days after his 21st birthday – while he was a University of Memphis (then Memphis State). He served five terms before retiring from politics to a business career. His biography on the university website notes that he was the youngest candidate ever elected to the General Assembly.
Rawlings, 20, is one of two Republican candidates this year in House District 51 (now held by Rep. Mike Turner, D-Nashville). His birth date is given as July 7, 1993. (Martin’s birthdate is Nov. 5, 1951). Ergo, Rawlins is about five months older than Martin during his campaign.
Sean Braisted, press secretary to the House Democratic Caucus, says Rawlings is actually not even the youngest candidate running for the state House this year. That distinction, he says, belongs to Matthew Huffer of Normandy, the unopposed Democratic nominee in House District 39 (now held by Rep. David Alexander, R-Winchester).
Huffer’s birth date is Sept. 8, 1993, or about two months later than Rawlings’ birth date, according to Braisted.