Name confusion in House District 85 campaign?

Name confusion may be a problem for Rep. Johnnie Turner in the upcoming Democratic primary for House House District 85, reports Jackson Baker. Turner has two primary opponents, one of whom bears a name long familiar within the councils of local public education in Memphis.

This would be Keith Williams, whose candidacy is indeed focused on education. Sort of. This Keith Williams — identified as a pastor, Memphis parent, and senior adviser for the “Tennessee Black Alliance for Educational Options” — testified to the General Assembly this past year in favor of state vouchers for use in private school.

That’s something that is pure anathema to another and much better known Keith Williams (Keith O. Williams, more fully) who has served as both chairman and executive director of the Memphis/Shelby County Education Association and who is a vehement and vocal opponent of school vouchers.

To compound the potential confusion, Keith Williams of the MSCEA ran unsuccessfully last year for the Memphis City Council, and the presence on this year’s election ballot of someone with the same name could be a real voter snag.

Rep. Turner, a former teacher and a decided opponent of school vouchers herself, says that Keith Williams of the MSCEA has pledged his support to her and will do what he can to clear up such voter confusion as might be.