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Competitors in House District 13 GOP Primary Have Differing Legislative Experience

Vanderbilt Brabson, who previously worked for the state Legislature, and Gary Loe, who previously watched lawmakers as part of working, are this summer competing against each other to become a member of the General Assembly.
Both of the Republican candidates for House District 13 say their past encounters with the lawmaking process were an inspiration and a learning experience, providing a key item on the resume they are submitting to voters in seeking to represent a diverse slice of the Knox County landscape.
“Rather than reporting on the Legislature on the sidelines, I thought I might instead be getting things done to help the community if I was there myself,” said Loe, responding to a question on why he wanted to become a legislator.
“I believe in better. We can do better,” said Loe, who watched lawmaking in past years as a reporter for WBIR-TV occasionally assigned to visit Nashville.
“Believe in better” was a theme line in Gov. Bill Haslam’s “State of the State” speech to the General Assembly in January. Loe said he did not realize that, though he had heard the phrase used by other politicians.

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TV Producer, Legislative Intern Face Off in GOP House District 13 Primary

Vanderbilt “Van” Brabson has been low-key in seeking the Republican nomination for the 13th District House seat that state Rep. Harry Tindell, a Democrat, is vacating, reports Georgiana Vines.
But he says that is about to change.
His opponent is Gary Loe, a TV sports producer, who’s campaigning everywhere. Loe says he wants to make sure people know he’s a serious candidate after losing two years ago in a race against state Rep. Steve Hall, who represents the 18th District.
Brabson said he “walked” during commencement at the University of Tennessee in December and was active in the College of Communication and Information’s Diversity Student Leaders Society.
He has been working in Nashville since then as an intern for the legislative fiscal review committee. When he first went there, he was in the House clerk’s office, assisting with the employee consumer affairs committee.
“Once I became a candidate, it looked unethical to be on the floor with members. Then I transferred to the fiscal review committee,” he said.
…He will have a meet-and-greet hosted by Joe Maddox, pastor of New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, at the church, 2504 Cecil Ave., at 5:30 p.m. Friday, May 18.
Once he’s through with his internship, he said he will campaign full time.
He and Loe are on the ballot for the GOP primary on Aug. 2. Gloria Johnson, Knox County Democratic Party chair, is running unopposed for the Democratic nomination in August.