On the race in House District 48, Terry vs. Campbell

Excerpt from a Daily News Journal story on the race for House District 48, a Rutherford County seat vacated by Rep. Joe Carr, R-Lascassas.

Bryan Terry, an anesthesiologist at Saint Thomas Rutherford Hospital who narrowly won his three-way Republican primary in August, said he would actively reach out to voters in a way that would promote what he called “self-governance” among them.

William “Bill” Campbell, the Democratic nominee and a retired campus minister for the Wesley Foundation at Middle Tennessee State University, emphasized his pragmatic approach to issues that would directly affect the residents of eastern Rutherford County he wants to serve.

…If elected, (Terry) said he would be the only physician in the state House and have a unique perspective on healthcare issues in Tennessee as both a doctor and patient.

“For me, having that experience gives me a perspective which I can discuss in committees or with the governor,” he said.

Terry slammed the Affordable Care Act as costly, problem-producing legislation, but wanted to learn additional details before taking a position on Gov. Bill Haslam’s proposed plan to use federal dollars to expand health care coverage in the state.

He also called for lawmakers to find new education standards that public schools could use instead of the Common Core standards the state had previously approved. State legislators delayed the standards’ implementation date last spring.

…Campbell, the retired Methodist minister and Democratic nominee, said he hopes to gain the support of that same swath of voters with what he called commonsense politics while campaigning outside the Rutherford County Courthouse on Monday.

He said he would go to Nashville ready to address the issues of his community without a sharply partisan focus if elected — something he accused Tea Party Republicans of only claiming to represent. While Campbell said Terry had allied himself with the Tea Party, the Murfreesboro physician said he has broad GOP support.

“I’m the candidate they pretend to be,” he said. “They’re passing laws and not meeting the needs of everyday people.”

He said he would support the state’s proposed Medicaid expansion, reigning in the cost of college tuition and promoting a sense of dialogue and civility he said has evaporated from the public and political discourse.

“I’m tired of the politics of fear and anxiety,” the former minister said. “I would like to not be preoccupied with the failure of personal morality of a few people that seems to threaten our citizens. I’m more concerned about the failure of our public morality and not taking care of our most vulnerable people.”