Joe Carr still balks at backing Alexander; Ditto for tea party leader

Joe Carr still won’t endorse Lamar Alexander, who beat him in the Republican U.S. Senate primary, and neither will a Nashville tea party leader, according to The Tennessean.

“I told him I would welcome his endorsement and would like to have it,” Alexander said. “I gave him my personal email and my personal telephone number.”

…“I’m still waiting for Lamar’s senior staff to get back in touch with me so that we can continue that conversation,” Carr said.

Carr said he doesn’t believe his endorsement is as important as some might think. But after months of hammering the senator for being part of the problem in Washington, he’s not quite ready to help send him back.

“We don’t need to be sitting it out, but what I’m hearing from people potentially sitting it out is because of the frustration that the more things change, the more things stay the same.”

For months, Alexander has had to explain his position on Common Core and his vote last year for a comprehensive immigration bill that offered a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Now Ball, in an unlikely move for a Democrat, is trying to exploit both in the general election.

Carr said he wants Alexander to publicly oppose Common Core and to take a stand against allowing the nation’s undocumented immigrants to become citizens.

Alexander has said he wants states to make all decisions regarding Common Core. Alexander has said his approach to citizenship would penalize illegal immigrants and not let them get any benefits.

… Ben Cunningham, president of the Nashville Tea Party, which endorsed Carr, said Alexander’s campaign has reached out to several Tennessee tea party organizations. His declined to meet, he said, and the group has opted not to back Alexander for the general election.

He said tea party backers who do vote for Alexander will do so reluctantly.

“Realistically, Lamar Alexander is going to win. He’s going to come out ahead, and we’ll have six more years of what we’ve had for the last 12 years.”